the children of divorce

... leave them kids alone (-- pink floyd) ©papa osmubal

... leave them kids alone (-- pink floyd) ©papa osmubal


the children of divorce

peter bakowski

In music class
you crack up
over the way
Mrs Nadebaum sings
‘Click Go The Shears’
with her thick Russian accent.

At home
there’s
the smashing of crockery,
the shouting of
accusations
and
their denial.

Here are two wooden puppets
in an old shoebox.
You need help
to untangle their strings,
but the world
has run out of
untroubled Sundays,
when older hands solved
the hard parts
of jigsaws.
You practice the piano
but
the spaces between notes
are filled with
sobbing.

In this life
you’re learning about
the splitting of atoms
and the slamming of doors,
the distance to Pluto
and the far greater distance
to forgiveness.

What’s left,
what holds,
is you in your room,
beyond midnight,
finding your place
in the world of a book,
hearing the milkman
just before dawn,
speaking
soft words
to his horse.

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