children's home

Care

Care

By jfarrell

 

At noon my ‘parents’ went on strike;

Children’s home, NALGO union…

National strike…

Nothing to do with us…

The children in care.

 

They walked out at noon.

The ‘Suits’ came round;

Council officials…

“We have to move you.”

 

My younger sister…

Boarding school in Wales….

Me… only space we got is borstal…

“SORRY! NO! NOT MOVING!”

 

Throughout the afternoon - police amassed;

Helmets, riot shields, batons….

That ONE police van….

Rocking, with muffled barking…

 

A dark grey freezing cold afternoon quickly became….

Dark, overcast, scary….

I saw that van open and all I saw was…

Teeth, hungry teeth, million dogs gonna eat me, bite me, hurt me….

 

I ran…..

Didn’t know where to, just away from here…

My breath misting in the air….

So cold….

Smell of burning….

It’s nearly guy fawlkes night….

What do you expect?……

 

The ashes floating past me

Were my CSE ‘A’ s …..

My education, my future,

Racing ahead of me in the freezing cold night.

 

I didn’t know….

And if I did,

Was there anything I could do?

15 years old, my children’s home going up in flames.

 

this is CARE!

For a political dispute….

I cut myself off from my family, forever;

And didn’t see my future burn as I did it.

 

I was just scared and running away from the dogs;

35 years later….

I’m not a meaningful, productive member of society;

I phone my sister her birthday, she phones me mine;

That’s it!

 

At 11 I was taken into ‘Care’;

“the Care of the State”.

Knowing why I, and my sister, were here…..

They still went out on strike…

 

Has the ‘Care System’ changed since then?

 

 

 

 

 

Author's Notes/Comments: 

my children's home was not burned down, but a lot of fires were started, no idea who by, i was gone

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In loco parentis

In loco parentis

By jfarrell

 

The October, before my CSE’s…

My ‘parents’ went on strike;

My children’s home was closed, overnight….

Very violently.

 

I cut my ties with my family, that night; forever;

And my coursework, homework projects and text books

I didn’t realise the ashes floating past me was my future;

I didn’t even know a fire had been started.

 

Who’d worry bout all the ‘A’ grades they were expected to get;

Who’d say goodbye, forever, to mum, dad, and younger sister?

Who’d be so arrogant? So stupid?

A 15 year old kid, scared of growing up to be his dad?

 

I have always been my ‘in loco parentis’;

You see a nearly 50 year old man;

I am 6 years old, trying to talk my dad outta beating me

Learning that the ‘very free sweets, toys and comics’ have a price;

 

 

My parents were not fit enough!

And the children’s home…. I need parents… politics? Strike?

In this world, this life, that has never made any sense….

How have I done? As a parent?

 

I think, I’d have had me locked up, long ago.

 

Not fit, to be near children….

Or anyone.

 

 

 

 

Author's Notes/Comments: 

i wasn't much of a brother when our children's home closed... or long before then..

my staying away from her and her family now, makes me the best brother ever...

but, it doesn't make it right

and nothing ever will...

sorry..

this is poetry, not psychotherapy, or drunks are us....

i reeeeeeeeaaaaaallllllly love you... go on, give us a kiss....

 

;-)

 

A dream last night

A dream last night

By jfarrell

 

 

 

I dreamt, last night, that my mum had died;

I wonder if it’s prophetic,

The way some dreams are;

And I should be ashamed I feel no sadness, no loss.

 

I got taken into care when I was 11;

(“ and you probably deserved it; only thugs, feral children

And criminals end up in care; you probably deserved it”);

Is the unspoken accusation I hear, all my life.

 

My ‘loving, responsible’ mother

Poured a bottle of vodka down my 8 year old sister’s throat;

Then dumped her, unconscious, on the outside stairs,

When she collapsed.

 

I bet, when my nan and uncle were told about us going into care

There was no mention of alcohol;

I was always the scapegoat;

I was always to blame, every bad was my fault.

 

Hearing that my dad had died, did not release me from the pain;

I doubt my mum’s death will either;

And, 25 years from now I will still be cursing her;

As I do my father, 25 years dead now.

 

Author's Notes/Comments: 

i've had many dreams, i'd describe as prophetic, ie in a sense they came true  - but i've never dreamed about my mother dying, though i've fantasized about it, often - does that make me an evil and wicked person, or just the same as everyone else alive?