by Rachel McGladdery
Rolling in one night on sea legs
made entirely from White Lightning,
He bowled up at mine and fell in through the door.
I helped him up and sat him down
and once propped upon a chair with a cup of tea he told me he had AIDS.
“Oh Dad,” I said and went to hug him.
He held his hand out like a nicotine stained starfish.
“You don’t have to bleach the cup.”
I held him sadly as he sobbed into my shoulder,
“Don’t treat me like a leopard.”
Rachel McGladdery lives in rural Lancashire with her partner, four children, two cats and a greenhouse.