I will make you a cup of tea The shade you like The warmth you find comforting The sweetness you find acceptable And you’ll savour it And recall all the other cups In your long, eventful life And you will be you safe this afternoon As you drift As it rains outside …
A time for forgetting
Over the last few months I’ve been forgetting little things. Last night it was the name ‘Nina Simone’. Not the person, just the name. Before that it was the name of a shape, the shape was a sphere. I had to ask my wife. Other things I’ve forgotten are the middle name of my father…
The modern gods of pain
Though not as packed with anxious parents and carers, medical staff and cleaners as it would be in a few hours, the hospital was still populated by that mix of worried and joyful adults that is peculiar to children’s wards and hospitals. The atmosphere was hopeful. I’ve found the same to be true on neuro wards but that’s a story for another time.
Fathers Day 2020 – A Sad Admission
Fathers Day in the UK is rolling around again. Every year since my daughter Zuzu died in July 2005 in her room in my flat in Sydney I contend with this day. This year it’s hit me in a different way.
On the Death of a Child & Trigger Warnings
For me, the problem with Trigger Warnings is that they often exacerbate the pain that they seek to protect us from. They also propose a world where healing from many different traumas is homogenised into a synthetic mass agreement as to what constitutes pain, damage, confrontation or peace. The synthesis is too simplistic and is in fact more demagogic than pedagogic: it speaks to a mass lie of consensus rather than enabling people to learn their way through their horrors.
On Being Questioned Over the Death of a Child
I was living in Sydney, Australia the day that my daughter died of a combination of pneumonia, a badly administered anaesthetic following dentistry work and her disability. She died in the room next to mine. I discovered her in the morning. I followed up this piece and you might like to read it here. This…
Thoughts on a funeral and love
Today is 15 years to the day since I spoke the eulogy at my daughter, Zuzu’s funeral. She was eight years old, nine that September had she lived that long, she had died two weeks previously. I’m sitting at home in my little office with its view of a quiet, suburban street in York during…