We rescued her from the seed merchants, sick kitten full of ticks
We popped them out of her and chucked them on the grate
She grows huge and lustrous, her eyes like fire cracked agate
Black night maiden cat.
Dad likes to see her at the window when he comes to collect me
I sense the heavy limbs of the trees and am a little afraid
In a consciously normal way, the way I think people think-
Knowing I am doing it wrong,
Dad doesn’t talk at all. I like that. He drives carefully
Leather crinkly Dad-gloves on the wheel.
The road is heavy with blackness and the headlights make giants
Out of everything. I am thinking of what I will be if I ever get home
If I ever shake off whatever is wrong with me.
There are two strange men nearby:
One is handsome and lives by the road
He wears my boyfriend’s old coat and steel toecap boots
His Mum gave them away to show charity.
My boyfriend hasn’t got a coat now so we go to Lawrence Corner
And a jumble sale.
Another walks this road every day, all the way from one town to the next
And back, over and over…
He shouts obscenities
My boyfriend sometimes talks to him
He collects madness.
I worry about the man in the woods
He got beaten up by skinheads
I know know know what it’s like…
I’m sleepy now. Home?
Dad is doing his best
He is probably still out there
In dreams I sometimes see him
Sitting on a wall in his beige raincoat
That’s never something he would never have done.