So that’s the wretched house that once contained
A bedded child, awaiting, expectant,
To capture murmurs of a love disdained,
My father’s sin, my mother's discontent.
I feared their talk might stumble into deeds,
A curse, perhaps a rupture, leaving me,
A child still influenced by infant needs,
Given to tears and sensed redundancy.
Talk became deeds and then mere silent space,
A couple cut in halves, all comfort flown,
For me a taint of undeserved disgrace,
The withered hopes of youth ungrown.
Older, among the bones of memory,
I ironise adult complacency