Mother's Ruin

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Mother’s Ruin


My mum would not touch alcohol

She never told us why

But she made rhubarb wine a lot

And also rhubarb pie

Sat in the Rhubarb Triangle

You didn’t have to try

To cultivate or care for it

It grew wild quite nearby


She got a secret recipe

To make a potent wine

She picked the fruit and followed it

Everything looked fine

Twenty-one bottles labelled up

On the shelf in a line

A potent brew not for the kids

Explosive as a mine


Me and my brother watched the dust

Settle on the glass

Of each and every bottle there

And as the time would pass

Decided we would try a sip

On Tuesday after class

But how would we ensure our dad

Wouldn’t then wup our ass?


Eventually we came up

With a neat cunning plan

To replace the wine with water

And keep our face deadpan

So we only took a little

Left bottles spick and span

Two teenagers getting tipsy

On sweet rhubarb ptisan (tĭ-zăn′)


Everything went swimmingly

Mouthfuls of sweet flavour

We never got caught by my dad

But did a small favour

Because when my mum was tempted

Once to sip and savour

It wasn’t fully alcohol

So we claimed we’d saved her


We told ourselves that many years

The bottles stayed up there

On the shelf in our mum’s pantry

Unreached without a chair

Until a time when we were gone

She poured, without a care

That diluted stash down the drain

And left our conscience bare

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Ian Whiteley

Sun 3rd May 2020 12:35

thanx Hannah - glad you liked it - true story too 😃

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Hannah Collins

Sat 2nd May 2020 21:41

Amazing story. Enjoyed reading this.


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