15. CW’s poem to AL

May 11, 2018

Lughole, by Chris Walsh

I know I’m a bit low

When I find myself studying

The Wikipedia page on Suicide.

It seems so brave,

To one feeling that pain.

Might things improve?

Does magic exist?

Like Cher, can I turn back time?

Tonight, to sound like Andy Capp,

(who after all was from my part of the world)

I got it in the lughole

From both mothers of my children.

“Do I want to enter into this conversation?” I asked the last.

Then I give my youngest a bath.

I dried her, put on clean nappy, kissed her pot belly.

She is the image of my eldest daughter

Who no longer speaks to me.

The tension is terrible.

I have learned to use silence.

It’s better than freaking out.

I’ve known businessmen who got everything they wanted

From silence.

But I’m no hard man.

No sooner has the quiet conflagration ended

I am wracked with guilt.

Children are guilt.

Pink loud loving guilt.

I leave early in a huff,

Drive home to my flat above the kebab shop

In my car which constantly tells me the brakes have failed.

I get a text from the mother of my two eldest,

Five years bitter

The woman to whom I have driven

twice a week to get the kids

for five years,

an hour each way;

“When will you put the money in?”

The money.

Wikipedia tells me

That suicide is often the result of financial difficulty

Twinned with mental illness

Living alone

Employment burnout

Substance abuse.

I’ve got the fucking lot.

When I study the list of suicides (from 500 BC to 11th May 2018,

That poor Scottish singer and the bridge)

I am kind of touching base

With souls I can relate to.

People who don’t fit in.

People who blazed

And fell.