Category: family

Saturday Rituals.

When I was little, strawberry blonde curls and those pools of blue, I spent Saturday morning, snuggled in your bed watching David Frost with you.

Then I grew.

Next came a cuppa in bed, by now I’ve aged I’m ten instead. The little black and white screen, cartoons now snuggled at your feet, there in your bed I watched them with you.

Then I grew.

Hangovers came next before the legal age, but never did you show a bit of rage. Tea for me tea for her, and her and her. Cartoons gone, the morning news, I’d sit and watch just me and you.

Then I grew.

And Saturdays became a blur as I scurried round to be ready for work. Tea on the side and toast going pop. The morning sun and me and you.

Then I grew.

Wings to fly the nest, history they call the rest. Saturdays were truly gone, now they always felt so wrong. Another day for dinner and tea, just you and me, me and you.

Then I grew.

I grew and grew and grew some more. Travelled away to another shore. The miles betweens us to far for a simple knock at the door. I grew and grew and grew some more.

Saturday morning as the sun cracks the morning sky I boil the kettle grab a cup, dial your number and patiently wait. First comes the white noise silence as you slip on the hearing aid….’Hello. Hello. Hello…ahh gotcha, alrite love.’
For sixty precious minutes we put the world to rights as we sip on tea. We talk politics and religion and atrocities and life, sometimes you simply give me advise. My Saturdays are long gone, but the cycle repeats, every Saturday without fail as the day begins, loud speaker on…..

‘Hello my Princess.’
‘Hello, Gandad. Love you Gandad.’
‘Love you more.’
‘Love you to the moon Gandad.’
‘Love you to the moon and stars Princess.’
(Girlish giggling.)
‘Love you to the moon and stars and back and to the sun Gandad, and to infinity too.’

My Saturdays curled up watching David Frost are gone, but hearing this declarations of love, Saturday no longer feels so wrong.

Karen Hayward ©2016.

The long forgotten Sundays.

What ever happened to my day of rest?
Sweet tea brought in bed
and marmalade toast,
on that day of which we made the most.
Whatever happened?
What happened to the sweet smell of polish and soaking wet rag,
Homework lined perfectly ready to bag?
Where did it go?
Little house on the prairie
as you gave me wisdom meant to be scary,
The Walton’s and that space show,
Sunday was the day when I had no place to go.
Bubbling pans, dripping glass
I wanted those days to forever last.
The tiny kitchen and cord brown stools,
I used to tip back acting the fool.
You told me this and that
None of it true all of it fact.
Time stood still as we chatted away,
whatever happened to my Sundays?
Dinner at 2 pm on the dot not a minute late
and never a thing on the plate for me to hate.
Chicken, pots, veg and gravy
then the afternoon for us to be lazy.
We walked by the sea with sand in our shoes
Rain, clouds or beneath a sky of blue.
I ran, I climbed, I skipped I walked
as we did, me and you talked.
What ever happened to my day of rest,
the day when we would reconnect?

The wee mountains forever as I cook.

Memories.

The whole flat smelt
of aged tannin and
a low whistle could
be heard at all times.
‘Tea?’
There was always time for tea, sarnies too.
You might call her a feeder, she wasn’t but some might call her that.
Food was a sign of respect, you went anywhere they offered you sweet tea
and food. I used a cooker
for the first time there
in that kitchen with
windows that looked
down the hill past the subways and out toward mountains, my Gran always laughed and said ‘Just a coupla wee hills.’ They were mountains to my young
eyes. She spoke constantly
in her rich Irish roots peppered with her Scottish life, if I concentrated hard enough my English mind understood
some of what she said.
Her voice was soft,
a whisper a beautiful
melody, she spoke as I grated potatoes, carrots and onion, her smile told me I was doing good. ‘Eggs, Gran and flour and water too.’ I was reading thr recipe from my mind and hoping I had remembered everything, we had cooked them a few weeks before in school.
She wears a house coat,
she has many, a blue one,
a pink one a brown one,
every morning she slips it over her clothes, I have never seen her clothes, I can only presume she wears them. She told me once, ‘wash your smalls in the sink every
night. That way you’ve always got clean.’ I asked what if you needed them…’she laughed ‘Go with out.’
A frying pan black as death and thick with grease
sizzles at my side.
‘Listen child.’
My Mum also says this phrase.
‘When you cook, you cook. Stay sharp keep thoughts out’
I didn’t listen, I burn most of what I cook because my thoughts make me
wander.  We sat at
the table, the small
window behind me
and the radiator to
my left, I feel warm
and safe. I don’t
recall what the
food tasted like,
just her smile as she devoured the plate.

Karen Hayward ©2015.

Dark angels reflect in the black of night.

There is a fierce fire that burns inside my soul,
hidden in the dark forgotten corners of my mind.
Engulfed with the flames of hell venom rises as my innocence is lost in the beating of my racing heart.
One becomes two as I watch with the calm of an ebbing tide, word upon word, truth upon truth tumble from my worn out tongue into the universe. All barriers down, this game of chess belongs to me, make her a pawn then watch me as I take your Queen and destroy your King and precious Kingdom. There’s a fierce fire that burns inside my soul, a flame of burning hope and eternal protection, the fallen angels reflection.

Karen Hayward ©2105.

Zadkiel I call upon thee now to give clarity to a final deed, did I turn my back on a soul in need? Is forgiveness the acceptance of even the broken,  no matter how harsh their words spoken? Must I forgive time and time again whilst they sprinkle down hatred that fills me with pain?
Zadkiel, can I forgive, forget and move on? Can I forget the shock in their voice as I questioned their choice? Was I wrong, should I have remained strong? Am I not her protector, is it not my duty to shield her? Was it selfish, did I put her ahead of their needs when they are so desperately in search of the broken seed? Zadkiel, I am lost and in fear, I searched for you but could not see you near. The words flowed with surprising ease as I watched her fall to her knee’s. Her beliefs torn apart, her thoughts questioned she stumbled upon lies a clouded darkness fell upon her eye’s. Chance and chance again, Zadkiel, I gave in and before my eye’s grey scale fell and I saw as I never seen before,
and now her role within, is no more. Zadkiel, I ask for clarity and forgiveness reserved for the strong, is my heart right? Did I do no wrong?

Karen Hayward © 2015.

What is forgiveness.

What is forgiveness? I’ve spoke those words a thousand times over and still I search for peace. I’ve forgiven your knowing spiteful tongue, i’ve forgiven your chosen ignorance. I’ve worked tirelessly to hold together the slipping strings as you have pulled and pulled demanding respect for your title alone. I have shed tears in the darkness on the balance of your belief. I have stood alone day after day because you refuse to accept her. Pride, my pride was swallowed down the moment I became.Standing alone in the darkness with my pride, you have danced holding it up as though a trophy of my defeat, I forgive therefore I am naive, I am weak. I am without bitterness, I am without hate.I am beginning to wonder at what point I should close the gate. You are blinded by your own selfish beliefs. You are blinded by fear. Perhaps, forgiveness is meant for me, I cannot make you see, perhaps this time, forgiveness is meant for me.

Karen Hayward ©2015.

I wish I had of known you.

Dedicated to all of the friends I have made along the way, the parents/grandparents and relatives and sometime’s just simply the people who get it!

I wish I had known you when

the health visitor asked

‘Is that all she can say?’

I wish I had known you that day

full of doom and gloom,

the first time sitting in the

children’s outpatient waiting room.

I wish I had known you

the first day it became inappropriate

for her to cry and freeze

in the super market, all eyes on me.

On the outside I was a rock

on the inside pink melting candy floss.

I wish I had known you when she was five

and still the stairs she screamed were too high.

I wish I had known you then.

It would have been nice to have had a friend.

I wish I had known you when the first friend

dropped away, communications just came to an end.

I wish I had known you every step of the way,

because had I , I’d have been able to say…

You’re doing just fine,

you’re so very kind,

I’ve a moment to hear

I can always be near.

As you hit each new issue

and reach for a tissue

I would have listened.

I would have stood at your side

been along for the ride.

I wish we would have known each other

back then,

when all of us felt alone and needed a friend.

Karen Hayward ©2015