Poem -

I Don't Know Why

They screw you up your Mum and Dad

I don't know why it had
The effect it did
Worse things have happened
To me

But I tend to remember things.
Emotions can run riot.
I have a younger brother
And younger sister

No older siblings.
I was the first born:
The novelty to my
Young parents.

Some years later
(Though we were still children)
My parents got out family photos.
There were more of me

Than my siblings
Since I'd been their novelty
And my photos had
Captions

"Playing with my grandparents"
'I always listen to "The Archers"
Don't you?'
(They'd put headphones

On me).
Innocent, and as children
We'd always been easy
About nudity- bathing together.

No shame or embarrassment.
Until that day with the
Photo albums.
Turn the page and

There's a baby lying on
A mat, face down
Naked, head to one side
Could it be my cousin

(Same age)?  No.
"It's you!"with the caption
"How undignified!"
(bare bum showing)
And so I had

My mother, my father,
My brother my sister
Laughing at me.
As my parents shoved

Forbidden fruit
Down my throat and
Made me feel ashamed
For no reason.

Other photos taken
A few years later
Showed myself
And siblings playing

Naked in the garden:
Full frontal innocent
Nudity, but then why
Would my parents

Want to photograph
Anything else?
A few years later I
Was allowed to

Throw that photograph away.
But ever since
I've always wanted to
Be accepted for who I am.

It's funny how seemingly minor events from childhood can have such a lasting effect.

MDC

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