Sunday, 15 January 2017

poetry 2017 / 011

Prelude to Regret

Her father's out – won't be back
until the early hours. The TV flickers
in the darkness of the living room.
Cold tile floor, rush mats. Wallpaper
chosen by her mother years ago
cubist eccentricity, a seventies style
marked down to ten pence a roll.
Cotteridge Ironmongers, where the scent
of kerosene and Jeyes Fluid dominate
over beeswax and three-in-one oil.
Airedale terriers hog the sofa
Penny snoring, Jake, grinning,
nuzzles her hand hoping
for fuss or a treat. She watches a film,
black and white horror on channel four
and teaches herself to smoke
with an old pack of camels.
Her father won't notice one more cigarette
among the overflowing ashtrays.

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