Bad Bottle Mum

I have only one child, and when he was born, he had breathing difficulties and was in the NICU for a week. I tried desperately for days to breast feed him, and nothing came. My baby was obviously starving and i decided to throw down the gauntlet and ask for a bottle. The nurses basically treated me like shit but my baby was happy, and we never looked back. Yes, breast is probably best, but we shouldn’t be made to feel inadequate it it doesn’t work out for some reason.

Bad Bottle Mum

I’m a bad bottle mum
I tried, my love, I tried
I held you close ‘til you latched on
But you cried for days
Little jewels of hunger
And frustration
You cried
Your rosy lips trying to
Suckle a miracle out of a
Dried up tit
My nipples were sore and cracked
As you latched your little jaw
And sucked
Like you’d never been
Fucking fed
And you hadn’t
My mammary glands were
Dead

I’m a bad bottle mum
The midwives said persevere
The milk would come
But four whole days
Of drought
And I had a newborn babe
With a nipple with nowt
Coming out
Who thought a tit
Meant starvation
And I had another tit that had
Shrivelled up in desperation
Nipples cracked and chewed up
Like an old dog bone and
I don’t like to moan
But I had a fucking starving
Kid here

After four days
I put my tits away
Asked for the bottle
Little old nurse with grey Hair
Gave me the
‘Are you a bloody idiot’ stare

I’m a bad bottle mum
That was when it started
The attitude, the negative cold
And frosty voice
The frozen, hard faced nurses
Thrusting tiny bottles of
Cow and Gate gold
Cos I was a fucking criminal
And no one told
Me it was ok
Cos breast is best and yeah, it is
But when the nurses are an army
And when your tits are traitors
And not
Doing their bit for the allies
When do you surrender?

And my babe did fine
He preferred the steady stream
Of liquid gold
To a titful of promises
Lies we were told
By the media
Progaganda
And he thrived

© 2020 Sarah Drury

Daddy

My husband died 9 years ago so not only was it my loss, but my 3 year old son’s too. He has never really spoken about his father before, it is as though he never existed at times, but the other day, when it was our 10th wedding anniversary, my son’s grief suddenly hit him and came out in a huge torrent of emotion. It was a liberating event for him, but devastating at the time, for both of us. I have written this simple poem for him.

To see you
Bleeding your
Heart out
There, son
With your tears
For daddy
9 years gone
His body now
Ashes in urns
Feelings exploding
In turns
of Rage
And sorrow
Crying for a father
For who there’s
No tomorrow
Holding hands
With thin air
Wish I could
Borrow
A future
For you
And daddy

You said you feel
Cheated
9 years passed
When you could
Have amassed
Memories
Moments that last
Forever
Rage
When you’re at
A stage
Going into puberty
You missed all that
Sitting on
Daddy’s knee
And I’m trying to see
How I can make
It up to you

I want to mend
Your broken heart
Fix the trauma
Of being apart
From him
From the man who
Was our rock
Who stood by us
Through thick
And thin
Who passed away
And could
Never say
“I love you son”
And you were
Too young
To comprehend
It’s sad that
Our love had
To end

All I can do is
Hold you close
Son
Salve your
Broken tears
Try to be the most
Empathetic mother
For there is
No other
Now
It’s just me
And you
So sorry, Kid
There’s nothing
On this Earth
I can
Do.

© 2020 Sarah Drury

Notions of Class

CAUTION: ADULT CONTENT

I had a very mixed childhood. My father, who died when I was seven, was a chartered accountant, and my mother had to do a variety of jobs to make ends meet, working her fingers to the bone. I wanted a better life, I wanted to be Middle Class. I studied at uni, wore the clothes, honed the accent, got a top notch teaching job, sang with professional choir. But mental illness got the better of me and my nicey nicey world came tumbling down. I have dropped my pretensions and am proud of my roots.

I tried to up myself
To better myself
To stick my nose in the air
I didn’t really care
Back then
About my poor, arthritic mother
Packing crisps down the factory
Or living in council shitholes
Because my mum’s wages
Were unsatisfactory
Single parent, widowed mother
One step from the shitheap
My story was just like another
And another
On our estate.

I never quite understood
The wine thing
Was it red with meat
And white with fish?
It had always been a case of
Just getting pissed
On any old cheapo plonk
I was a classless pisshead
Had to step up my game
Didn’t want my shameful roots
To catch me out again
So fucking sick of
Being related to the woman
Who cleaned up the pile of puke
So fucking sick of it

I thought a silk Monsoon dress
And a Cheadle postcode
Made me one
Of the elite
Talking like a village vicar
But fucking the men
Beneath the sodden sheets
Within the sordid walls
Not the epitome of discrete
And the milk man
Never noticed
The skulking, adulterous feet
Seeking silence
Betwixt the dawn chorus

Mental illness
Had no bounds
I was ebbing my life away
Behind bars in
Psychiatric compounds
Swapping my Monsoon frocks
For electric shocks
Lithium, Valium
Straight jackets worn like
psychosis condoms
On men’s misogynist cocks
Sanity took years
Craziness is
Classless

I am proud
Now
To be called working class
I’m proud to hold my head high
As I walk upon the needle littered grass
In this steel town hometown
Keeping my vowels plain and flat
And minimising my metaphors
Like I’m waltzing on broken glass
Don’t want my neighbours
To think
I’ve got
Pretentious
Notions
Of
Class

© 2020 Sarah Drury

Coronavirus Mum

WARNING: A FEW SWEAR WORDS

Hands up who’s starting to go mental, cooped up all day, every day, with their nearest and dearest? In my house, it’s just my almost-teen son and I and its challenging! I often go to an open mic night called ‘Away With Words’ in Hull, and due to Coronavirus, the events have gone online. I’ve written this to perform for that event. It’s hopefully a bit of tongue-in-cheek fun!

I must defiantly admit it
I didn’t think coronavirus
Would be so fucking shit
As I’m dragging out my son
From his tweenage stinking boy pit
And he’s sleeping in old pj’s
Cos I ain’t washed shit and nothing fits
It’s hard when you’re alone
And you’re on your own and life is shit
And he’s twelve years old and a bit

I didn’t think home ed
Would be so wrong
Didn’t think that every morning
He’d be singing me a sob song
That I’m working him like Jesus
And Tenko is his theme song
That his friends don’t do no work
And I’m being a cruel bitch all along
Why is my son so fucking headstrong?

I didn’t think self isolation
Would go on forever
I used to think that propaganda’s
Boris just being clever
I always hoped that we would never
Stand so close together
I’m loving that I walk around
In no clothes whatsoever
And that shaving all my hairy bits’
No longer an endeavour
But who needs a shag these days?
Wherever? Whenever?
Our sexy bits will heal up forever!

I didn’t think that shopping
Would be such a joke
I never thought I’d need two hundred
Toilet rolls fought off a bloke
Going round grabbing pasta needing
Harry Potter’s magic cloak
Can’t loiter round the entrance
Choking back a wacky baccy smoke
Standing two metres away
From your hostile Tesco queueing folk
Get your hand sanitiser out
And punch that bloke.

I must defiantly admit it
I didn’t think coronavirus
Would be so fucking shit
I can see half of the country
Panic buying rampant rabbits
And the other half are drowning
In the bog roll when they have to sit
In social distanced bathrooms
With their virus manky halfwits
And folk all over England
Are falling into death pits
When will our fucking country
Get their act together with this shit?
In another six months and a bit!

©2020 Sarah Drury

CoronaKid

I was thinking how hard it is for our kids at the moment, having to be locked away constantly, hiding from an invisible enemy. Their whole world has been turned upside down! My son has it especially tough as there are only the two of us in the house and i suffer with bipolar disorder and anxiety issues, and he has autism and challenging behaviour so it’s like a pressure cooker at times!

Here’s a poem I’ve written for spoken word, seeing life in Coronavirus times through his eyes.

MILD SWEARING

It’s a bit shit
Couped up
Coronakid
Walled up in a council tomb
Tempers flaring
Like a pressure cooker lid
Wishing there were dos
Which don’t
Which must
Which can’t
Which didn’t
Which did

Walls seem scary
When your life is really
Coronation Street
Without a plot
Hours which seem
Like days
Which seem
Like years
Which seems
Like concepts
That I’ve not yet fully got
Mum’s ready to blow
I’m really so, so worried
That the going’s
Got so hot
Feelings churned
Around like
Psycho soup
In a perpetual
Emotional boiling pot.

No school
No mates
No welcoming
Playground gates
But then I hated school
Mum tries her best
But she’s not
Getting rest
Her moods are
Tending to be
Hot not cool
I give her shit
Because I’d rather sit
And waste
My days away
Fuck this home ed shit
School’s bollocks
All I want to do
Is fucking play
But all my momma
Has to say is
Do your bloody work
Or there’s
No PlayStation
Today

I miss my family
And my friends
It’s like looking in
A claustrophobic mirror
Seeing our two faces
Day after day
Like a glitch in the matrix
Like a horrifying error
And I don’t know
What’s worse
In my life
The insane boredom
Or the
Abominable terror
Cos we’re in
An invisible war
And it feels like
We’re fighting on
Forever
and ever

©2020 Sarah Drury