Stacey

My name is Stacey
I am hard as the knuckles
on my father’s hand
When his gold sovereign ring
kisses my lying teeth
With a glint of what he calls
tough love

And his Doc Marten feet
dance on my nail-hard flesh
Painting green and purple
masterpieces with
splashes of red
A canvas of abuse but
he says he loves me
And love is precious

And his eyes cut into
my heart like a surgeon
nonchalantly considers
a newly deceased cadaver
I have to look away
or iron palms will smart
my punch bag cheek
But love is like that

I think my life is tough
But at the end of the day
it’s for my own good
My father says
I’m a fucking little bitch
But he will break me
and make me

But he’s birthed a monster
with his fists of fire
and his hands of hate
and his feet of fury
and his temper of turmeric

I am Stacey
I am hard as the knuckles
on my father’s hand
And I am as broken
as the glass greenhouse
where my father
shouldn’t throw stones

©2020 Sarah Drury

Image by Pexels from Pixabay

Father

My father was
an accountant
Man of many vices
But he loved us
to the grave
Coffin in the flames
I waited for a phoenix to
emerge
But got Pompei

Juggling booze
and fags
and indiscretion
Libido painted
as a female fuck
Alibis weaved like
religious confessions
sliding off a
secular tongue

Thirty three years
gone by
History repeats
like an acid reflux
deja vue
And they say
my son needs
a father figure
And I say
fuck the patriarchy
I am all the man
he needs

©2020 Sarah Drury

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