The beginning (of the end of the life of a couple)

Madam, in bed
half dead
her skin as thin
as watery as her eyes,
lids seal with blue lines

sleep-denying pain.

I have been sitting by her bedside ever since the ordeal was over.

The nurse lifts herself to her silent feet


She rearranges the heavy covers (heirloom) around the mother’s fevering neck.
Outside, the winter, banished from the room by dark.drapes,
is creeping around the other entries to the house

s s s s s h h h h h h h

and stealing in through an opened kitchen window, where the servants go about their chores in subdued manoeuvres.

It was a boy. The boy was dead. Dead, rotting, and trapped inside that narrow passage-way, for hours

whilst his beloved mother; screaming and thrashing.

Unprepared for any such complications, the doctor sends the nurse to fetch the cook, who,
full of her importance,
there she goes,
bustling up the stairs
yet remembering her manners well enough to throw a mild glance  (and a curtsy) at the master of the house as he –  up and down in the Main Hall.

But the child is dead. A boy.
somewhere on my way I got jabbed and I fell down

The Master snatches his shotgun and marches off to the stables.


Having children’s the beginning of the end of the life of a couple… As a man, you take the back seat from then on. As long as you know this, ‘spose it’s alright.
    Having children massacres a woman’s body… that’s another cause for the beginning of the end. Childbirth pulls her all out of shape n leaves a gaping hole that nobody ever talks about. Muscular re-education classes: what a load of crap! Did your midwife say to you: after childbirth, your tight little pussy’ll turn into a bloody tunnel n when he’s up there, he won’t feel a thing? Oh, didn’t she? I wonder why… You know any woman who’ll ever admit that her fanny feels different after childbirth? Yeah, yeah, it supposedly creaks back into place like an old church door… You can feel the contractions of it, and then everything’s hunky-dory.

Bull. Shit.

    Friend of mine paid a humongous amount to a doctor to make sure his wife delivered by Caesarian…
    She’ll only tighten up again when she’s pregnant once more. It gets nice n tight and it’s great for a man to be in there. Don’t know why so many women feel it’s wrong to have sex when you’re pregnant. It’s great! I’ve treated myself to a couple of pregnant women. Marvellous! Won’t find noffing better. I got onto the womanising track when my first wife fell pregnant. Didn’t want me to touch her anymore. Pas touche? Her loss, not mine. Plenty more fish in the sea, n’est-ce pas? But then the child gets born, and it’s flappity flap all over again… You see those young mums with their great figures; narrow hips, perky backsides? All well n good, but if they birthed naturally, I don’t give a toss how narrow their hips are, there’s a whacking great hole in the middle. And those girls, children you almost have to say; thirteen, fourteen, fifteen, sixteen, who’re already mums, what a shame. You can write them off for life… Why do you think husbands drift towards anal sex? Cos they want to feel something! Problem with anal sex, though, is that the women take a liking to it, then don’t want it any other way. Yeah, and why do they take a liking to it, hey? Hey? Me? I go the anal way with women who’ve had their children naturally, cos some of them’ve got a fanny on em that’s so loose, fit your whole hand inside. Two even. And clap. Same goes for some backsides, sorry to say…
    Men shouldn’t assist at childbirth if you ask me. She’ll be screaming, farting, crapping, saying vile things to and about you and you, idiot, are sposed to just stand there saying Yes darling as you squeeze her hand or mop her friggin brow? Then there’s the pushing and gushing and out it plops as from a sewer. It’s probably yours, but you’re still too shocked by what you’ve witnessed to feel anything nearing pride. Puts a man off for life. You’ll never really want to be in there again. Ever. But we’re not allowed to say that about wifey, are we?

    Well, better trot along with all the others and show him my sad eyes. Like I care.


(adapted from The Red Room)

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