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Tag Archives Bedlam

‘FOR I WILL CONSIDER MY CAT JEFFROY’

‘For he is a mixture of gravity and waggery.’  Christopher Smart

 

Unlike kind Kit Smart, incarcerated,

by his father-in-law, in bedlam –

and estranged from his children forever –

I do not have a cat. I have the neighbour’s.

I think there is only one though it dresses

in ginger, tortoiseshell, Friesian, motley,

whatever. It is ‘the Devil, who is death’

for it stalks the wren, the blackbird, the robin,

that sing and nest. Poor Christopher – busy hack,

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VISITING MOTHER IN BEDLAM

For all the pretty curtains and the tasteful prints

and the carers’ determined bonhomie,

this is the house of the mad and my mother

a permanent resident.

 

Sane, she was aggressive. She is docile now.

She was unsociable, sane. Now she smarms –

at folk she’d once have considered common.

 

She thinks I am dead or my long dead father.

You’re a nurse or her daughter. Alzheimer’s

is the ultimate in wish fulfilment.

 

The deranged have no beauty or dignity,

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