Last Day at School

Reflections on single-parenthood. 


Last Day at School 


And you are off,

Floating through our front door,

Awash with make-up,

Dripping with love,

Much taller now,

Towering above me

A figure of strength,


 Last day at school


Where are you now?

When you are not with me,

No need for cuddles,

No clinging to my leg,


You won’t remember,

Your first day at school,

Like I do,

 Twinkle Twinkle,

Chocolate bar,

Tear torn tissues,

Darkening your pockets,

As the day went on,


The only girl there who cried for her Mummy,

First to the door at the end of the day,

 A day that had been filled with fear for both of us,

Because there was only us,


Your Daddy was gone,

My family awry,

I was young and foolish

You, the reason I got by,

 A love unfathomable

At such a young age


You stole all hearts in an instant,

Wherever you went,

 Mrs Irving

Wanted you for her own,

Told me so daily,

‘Can I just take her home?’


They told me you were bright,

Just like I had been,

It came as no surprise,

‘Bound for great things,’

 We read and we wrote,

We walked and we talked,

We held hands and skipped,

We loved and we hoped,


They picked you for school council,

They picked you for shows,

They chose you for newspapers,

They pushed you to grow,


My heart it grew


Proud, and prouder still

Bad days

Made better

By your love for school

She’s still doing well,

‘Despite where you’re at,’

She’s going to make it,

Daddy or not,

 I cried, a lot,


Tears of anger, frustration and fear,

Tears of elation, a full heart of pride,

In High School,

You, the likeable new girl,

Polite, pleasant, achieving, proud,

 Glowing reports burst into my heart

Placed with all the others,

Ace from the start,

 Hidden from our empty fridge,

 You never questioned,

Never complained,

When everyone else’s

New uniforms came,


When I look back today

On your last day at school,

At reports, photos, paintings

Memories made,

Wonky glasses,

Cutesy smiles,

Our house as it was,

Crayoned in pink,

Perfect handwriting,

Your first piece in ink,

 It is simply not a question of grades,

It’s a recognition of strength,

And of how you were made.






◄ Strive to Succeed

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branwell kent

Sun 7th Feb 2021 00:21

very good poem

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Sat 6th Feb 2021 20:28

This is beautiful Candi. All those small things which mean so much in the eyes of the unfaltering love of a parent. Quietly powerful and made me think of my own mum. ?

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