Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Writing

Slipping Through Her Fingers

I blacked out and woke up with bruised knees.
For a second,
it felt like I standing on the frame of my brother’s buggy again,
peering over the sun guard,
to see the world a little better,
but, no, I was just back in bed,
nursed by a matron who meant well, but had to know she was trying to heal a lost cause.

I’ll never see myself the way that you do,
and I was never afraid of losing myself forever,
because I was already lost,
so, slipping away a little more each day just felt natural,
but you kept bedside vigil,
in case I found a way back.

As I slept,
you said something about how it had always felt like I was slipping through your fingers,
but you had to know that I was never really there.
You gave birth to a ghost,
a spirit, who couldn’t ever stay,
but still,
you hoped I’d stray from the plan,
remaining in this realm just a little longer.

The sun is so bright on my worst days,
and I can see her,
the girl you’ve been waiting for,
her hand clasped in yours,
tight and frightened,
and I realise that I’ve been waiting for her too,
but she’s been lost, for the longest time.

I don’t see her, when I stare in the mirror,
except for a small shadow,
that grows fainter with every second,
and I finally understand why you miss me most when you look at my baby photos.
Is it selfish to banish her?
I can’t stand to look at her,
because I’m embroiled in envy,
at how blissfully unaware she is.

Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Writing

Watching My Son Sleep

Sleeping safe,
grandmother’s blanket by the foot of the bed,
crocheted squares crashed to the floor long ago,
because just like me,
there is fire in your veins,
tornadoes tattooed inside of your skin,
and you could never stay in one place for too long.
I tuck you back in,
my throat full of all the things I want to say,
but my mind full of guilt at the thought of waking you,
so I do what I always do,
as my mother did before me,
I stare with a smile at the greatest gift I was ever given,
until my eyes are exhausted.
I became pure when you became mine.
I saw myself in a new light,
in your new, needy eyes,
I accepted that I was necessary,
that I was worthy,
because you loved me,
because you depended on me.
You are sleeping safe,
inherited eyes are tightly closed and you are dreaming,
I wonder where you go,
and I wonder if you’ve seen the heights that I’m so sure you’ll reach.
Just let me be a part of the picture your imagination paints.

Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Writing

Growing Up

I think wistfully about what I will be like when I grow up.

Clean credit cards,

a clean sink that gleams, as if it has never glimpsed a dirty dish,

a son, settled into sleep (I am so convinced it is a boy),

while I write,

perched on the windowsill,

singing softly to my assorted indoor plants,

and the patient glow of the moon.

There is no landlord,

and I am the lady of a tidy home,

wearing neat, sensible clothes as I turn walks to nursery school into a wild adventure,

quite out of character for my new persona,

but the last little part that I will keep of who I was.

There is a shadow of a soulmate,

when I dream about it,

always in the corner of my eye,

or just out of reach,

and sometimes,

I ask them who they are,

but there is always refusal,

so I reluctantly accept that sometimes,

you have to wait for the answers.

I spend my time,

in the current time, being stiff, distant and weird to suitors,

so I can be sure that they’ll stay,

if I get back to my old ways (which are technically my current ways),

but just like the lonely sea,

I am always left bereft,

so,

sometimes,

I think I ought to try being more palatable,

but who really wants to just be tolerated?

My son has dark brown eyes, like mine,

and I have yet to tell him that the dinosaurs are extinct,

because I cannot bear to break his heart.

He has the smallest hands I have ever held,

but they are always cold,

like a ghost,

and I haunt the hospital,

pleading for peace of mind,

while a doctor (always a male) tuts, and says that ALL new mothers are hysterical.

I have never seen my boy as baby,

so it feels unfair to be labelled as new,

but I suppose it’s one of those things where you never stop learning,

so I lean into the label,

grateful that my child gazes up at me as if I am a God.

Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Writing

The Girl’s Madness – Part One

I meet the eyes of my mother less and less,

because of my envy, that I could never get past,

and the fear that I will pass the point of being her pride and joy, disappearing into her disappointment.

My body is a clam that longs for a pearl,

passed over by the unkind sea,

that never saw fit to find me worthy of motherhood.

I don’t know that I’d be any good.

Children smile at me.

Children stare at me on buses,

but I’m sure it takes much more than that,

to make some cells into a success,

and maybe I just want a child in the way that a child wants an imaginary friend?

I want to pretend that I am not hurtling through the human experience with nobody to matter to.

I want to pretend that when I am gone, an echo of me will remain, growing stronger and louder every day.

I want to pretend that someone will need me, or miss me, or love me.

I want to pretend that my body is not full of poison and could produce something perfect.

I want to pretend that every well meaning but quite presumptuous person who told me that I would be a good mother was right.

I want to pretend I could give up smoking for a whole nine months.

Posted in Blog

In Celebration of Single Mothers

She’s split in two,

guarding her cubs,

everywhere at once,

time is at her beck and call.

Taking twenty four hours,

making it stretch,

the way her child benefit does,

and the sporadic maintenance money,

that she manages to shake,

from reluctant pockets.

She makes sandwiches in her sleep,

house and uniforms clean,

play dates at the park,

homework in the dark,

guarding her cubs,

from abrupt, unfair assumptions,

giving them twice the love,

as she guides them through the jungle,

to the life of their dreams.

Hiding the hunger inside of her,

and the thunder of low expectations,

so the cubs will grow strong,

and roar their names with pride,

throughout the glittering leaves,

that wear rain,

like scars.