Barking Mad

By | 24 July 2007

And finally with little one, first
stuffed-up nose for the year,
struggling to stay asleep, tucked in behind her.
It reveals itself.
The meaning of the 'awful past'.
A sudden downpour, hard for air to get through.
The slap across her face that leaves her jaw clicking.
O clouds unfold! Waters broke, a warmth running down her spine.
For it's about her stupid empathy being exploited. About her
youthful gullibility being disarmed and
savaged and made to account for things it didn't
cause or start or, even, ever consider.
How she was wrong-footed, dumb-headed
for a man who ran at her with a machete, an idle hammer, a mobile phone
a man who tried to have her arrested for sedition,
sentenced for his thefts with her signature.
How her believing in standing up for the underdog
lacked serious assessment of that dog's training and character.
How she's never been very interested in domestic animals.

And finally with little one, double
doses of vitamin C,
pockets padded with cough lollies and tissues, twirling ahead of her,
She can see how it happened.
Like a Pilger expose, the inverted pyramid
that silenced her ambitions.
Who she was, when she was like this, over and again,
A seasonal problem? Always October to December.
Why she was the way she was and
what of that poisonous cock with a tail, and other shadows like him.
Those lost years, her toxic shock syndrome.
She is that woman who married in secret, in blue
And divorced in town, in red.
Without cowering, forgetting to eat or wishing to forget
She remembers it all.

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