Memories of Mum and Dad

Added the audio today. Hope you enjoy!


Where are they now, these people who loved me?

One of them dead and the other one should be.

He died early but Satan's still to ring her.

I don't think of them often, but these memories linger.


Six foot five, full of Guinness and fight.

Five foot four, full of vinegar and spite.

Belligerent bully with fists of iron.

Constant critic without a shoulder to cry on.

These things were normal to a six year old boy.


Long distance Dad on jobs shifting steel.

Driving his Volvo, almost asleep on the wheel.

Missing Mum on part-time shifts at the local.

Tending drunks on her own, getting angry and vocal.

These things were normal to an eight year old boy.


Gatling gun volleys of verbal violence.

Prolonged periods of insidious silence.

Repeated outbursts of furious feuding.

Ensuing intervals of black-hearted brooding.

These things were normal to a ten year old boy.


Acid accusations of adulterous assignations.

Desperate denials of flirtatious fascinations.

Rushed relocation of besotted betrayer.

Lust fuelled lies of a selfish strayer.

These things were normal to a twelve year old boy.


Countless beatings with his belts or their buckles.

Pointless arguments resolved with a slap or his knuckles.

Her off the scene, set up home with her lover.

Divide up the kids, setting brother against brother.

These things were normal to a fourteen year old boy.


Staying out of the house to miss the projected rage.

Stand up for yourself, you're a man at this stage.

Never show your fear, put away your emotion.

You're not welcome here, find a place of your own son.

These things were normal to a sixteen year old boy.


Where are they now, these people who loved me?

One of them is dead and the other one should be.

I planned their deaths so many times in my mind.

Putting them out of my misery, to myself I'd be kind.

These thoughts are normal for a fifty year old boy.


Robert Mann

◄ Haiku: Meditation

Black Dog ►


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Robert Mann

Sat 20th Jul 2019 16:21

Forgot to say thanks for the 'likes' - always equally appreciated.

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Robert Mann

Fri 19th Jul 2019 12:35

M.C. - The memories still sting, but getting them out of the system definitely helps. I'm glad this piece moved you and several others to comment, as that is always appreciated.

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M.C. Newberry

Fri 19th Jul 2019 01:51

Powerful, personal and penetrating - with the age-jump in the final
verse leaving this reader almost recoiling from the trauma recounted in the narrative.

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Robert Mann

Thu 18th Jul 2019 21:05

Tom/Trevor - POTW will never happen as I asked to be excluded when it was initiated due to my disappointment at WoL refusing to disclose the judging process. I'm glad you liked the piece enough to comment though - much appreciated.

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trevor homer

Thu 18th Jul 2019 20:17

nothing to add to that mate - worthy of acknowledgement. Thanks

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Thu 18th Jul 2019 20:02

Wow Robert - this is powerful. PoTW for me. Thanks so much for sharing. Particularly loved these lines:

Acid accusations of adulterous assignations.
Desperate denials of flirtatious fascinations.

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Robert Mann

Thu 18th Jul 2019 18:17

Thank you everybody for taking the time to read this piece - originally written in 2012. It was cathartic to get the feelings down on paper, and it started my writing and using poetry to express myself and how I see the world. These were hard times for me, but I'm sure I wasn't the only one who went through the pain of a dysfunctional upbringing. I appreciate the readers' interpretations, which sometimes give me a reflection of their own struggles.
Many thanks, Rob

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Thu 18th Jul 2019 17:21

Strong and affecting Rob. A long term affair with no apparent escape - reminiscent of kitchen sink drama in the days gone by. There was much cruelty in the domestic arena. largely fuelled by drink and resentment based on the hard times expected and realised by so many . No excuse I know, and no comfort at all. There are many stories in my family of meals thrown out of windows with a curse and suchlike.

Great sense of time passing, clever idea.
I love accents and I wonder do you have a Cheshire one by any chance?


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Brian Maryon

Thu 18th Jul 2019 16:41

They never heal, those feelings that your Mum or Dad never loved you enough.

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Thu 18th Jul 2019 16:24

Ah Rob - Beautifully written, its emotional content sharp and penetrating. I hope the writing of it brought some measure of healing.
Go well

<Deleted User> (22158)

Thu 18th Jul 2019 15:30

I love the timeline structure here from age 6 to 50. This is a very well written poem that describes much sorrow. I got a very emotional pull from reading (and hearing) this. Great work.

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Thu 18th Jul 2019 15:23

Abusive home stories, domestic violence and innocent children suffering.....very well depicted....the theme putting all these as normal should ring an alarm, unfortunately it doesn't.... As everything just pass, this too shall pass. Well expressed piece!!!

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