Baby Greys

By | 1 February 2019

Weak, wintery sunlight illuminates the fine layer
of dust that has
settled on every flat surface
and
crept into every crevice
like a malignant fungus
hell-bent on colonising my living room.

I pace.

Jeans too-tight over my bottom,
the flesh that wobbles round my middle is as foreign
to me as this wailing,
scrunch-faced
bundle in the rocker.

Utterly alien.

He smells
and the sickly, sweet smell of excrement

curdles and
flips my stomach.

The day s t r e t c h e s
into infinity.
The sonic boom of a plane,
laughing neighbours and the hum of traffic
meld into a symphony of a world
I cannot get to.

The colour
seeps
slowly away and
all is grey.

The seventh cup of tea is tepid
and acrid
with artificial sweetener
that pretends to
melt
excess flesh from my frame.

Babyweight,
is the euphemism,
as if it is a shameful secret
trembling under
loose t-shirts
and stretchy leggings,
desperate not to be found.

I remember when I drunk
my tea hot
and sweet with sugar,
I had idly
stroked my growing bulge,
joyful in my ignorance.

The nappy bag
is sulky with disuse.
The myriad of
confusing pockets
and
insulated compartments are just
too much to bear.
Too motherly.
Too someone else –
who is
coping.

My friends call and call.
I cannot speak
for fear.

There is only so much fakery
I can perform.

The mask of motherhood
is a diabolical one,

I slip it off between these walls,
and it chafes when I am out.

Day fades
into a dull evening as I sit.
Beige and grey,
my brain is
stultified.
Counting the minutes, the hours
until I do it
all
again.

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