Wednesday, 9 February 2011


They blast bass and synth, some Italiano rhymes

While like a lost child my fucking head floods

Tears of fatherless school years

Tears of crippling

Sickening missing

A complete parental education

Others were taken around in cars driven by mum and dad

They had dinner without the television on

One (if not both) at teachers meeting

Sports day plays

A ride home from birthday parties

Sleepovers church cinema

There was no figure in the hallway

Sex sounds in the bedroom

Sunday dinners

Visits to grandma

Work places


Dad checking homework

Mum folding clothes

Dad fixing punctures

Mum sowing buttons

Dad buying Coke

Mum buying Apple Juice

Dad tickling mum

Mum tying Dad’s tie

Dad drinking beers

Mum on G and T

Dad watching news

Mum watching soap operas

Dad reading papers

Mum reading books

Dad in the shower

Mum in the bath

Dad walking naked

Mum wearing a nightgown

Dad eating bacon and eggs

Mum just eggs

On weekends I got up early and ate breakfast crisps

Drank milk and cartoons

Sat in pyjamas with curtains closed

Stale stink from ashtrays and smudged glasses

It could have been pissing down or

Hot as hangover hell and I’d be inside

Blocked from kicking balls at walls

Throwing pebbles at street cats

Falling from trees

There was no falls or spills

No getting lost or taking money from my

Mother’s purse

Schoolkids’d call and I’d ignore the doorbell

Cartoon voices teeth unbrushed my mum

Damned in a weekend lie in

Homework would remain in my thin

Bag by the door ‘till Sunday bedtime

When I’d panic and start sums

Reading art

My weekend bath

Clean behind the ears

There ‘till the water got cold and murky

‘till the bubbles disappeared

‘till mum’s soap drama finished

Maybe once a blue month I’d get a call

From Da and he’d ask how I was

And about school and friends but when

Was fathering done over the phone?

When was fathering long distance

And through correspondence?

Kids aren’t meant to be forced into chatting

About what they’ve been up to and how they’ve missed

A parent like an arm or hand

Kids are meant to be free of emotional

Distressing upsetting situations

Such as divorce

Such as moving country

Such as longing

Such as living above a halal butchers

Such as arguments heard through bedroom walls

Such as sexual television

Such as sleeping in pubs

And I try and picture in the earliest pictures

If I could’ve known I’d be here 30 years later

In a room with curtains closed smoke infested

Clothes smudged highballs with deteriorating

Ice cubes and frozen water dripping down

My face as divorce takes its toll.

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