THE GENERATION GAP
Nan, I’m calling. Recalling to you,
Watching me being born at the QE2
Where you cleaned, when word passed
Down that Kath was in the labour ward.
You were the first to see me emerge,
And mum said I had a big head
(“Nothing much has changed” she said).
You had me in the kitchen sink at five;
Washing me, scrubbing at the dirt on me
When mum was away
Convalescing from a hysterectomy.
You fed me with Sunday dinners, leaving them
At the back door to cool, filled me with
Hearty nourishment on school days, then
Alex’s fish, chips and mushy peas on Fridays.
In the ambulance, you came with mum because
You heard I was hurt at the park and no-one
Knew where Dad was.
In the dark I ran up to your house
And cried I was afraid because Dad
Was on our phone talking to a woman
That didn’t sound right.
You took me with you on holidays with Auntie Nellie,
To Broadstairs and Margate bed & breakfast,
And it never rained.
On the eve of your birthday in 1978
You wept, hating to think Fate had swept us up,
So that under Australian skies your great –
Grandchildren would be born without you being around.
(c)copyright, Julie McNeill Feb 2006
all rights reserved