Still waiting for my results. Pah.

14 11 2006

Father

Slipping my arm under her,
Around our bump,
I smile into her soft hair,
Savouring this contact
Before she shifts away.

I want to be closer
To her, to them.
But she resists.
So I build the baby’s cot
And make another list.

I already know what needs
To be done.
I know the two best routes
To the hospital.
And what to pack and who to call.

It fills me with awe that
I will soon be Dad.
Like destiny being fulfilled.
I am impatient
To see our baby’s face.

But though I plan, prepare,
She avoids, evades.
So I put off once more
The fruitless enquiry “Are you okay?”
In favour of this moment of peace.

Mother?

I know what I am meant to feel;
I’ve read the books,
I’ve seen the programmes.
I know what I want to feel:
Joy and excitement and gratitude.

But whilst strangers smile
And loved ones dote,
The spring tide of panic
Lashes at my feet,
I am slipping.

I envy his easy anticipation,
His confidence not weakened
By reticence; his place secure in
The club of happy parents-to-be.
I never filled in my membership form.

Questions cloud my vision
So I cannot see how I can do this:
Be a mother.
Care for a baby.
Give up my life.

Frustrated and fearful,
I shut him out.
Joy is resentment,
Excitement is dread,
And I don’t thank anybody.

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