Saturday, 26 April 2008

We Remember Your Childhood Well (Carol Ann Duffy)



Have been looking through E's GCSE English anthology with her and came across this, which spoke so much to me:


Nobody hurt you. Nobody turned off the light and argued
with somebody else all night. The bad man on the moors
was only a movie you saw. Nobody locked the door.


Your questions were answered fully. No. That didn't occur.
You couldn't sing anyway, cared less. The moment's a blur, a Film Fun
laughing itself to death in the coal fire. Anyone's guess.

Nobody forced you. You wanted to go that day. Begged. You chose
the dress. Here are the pictures, look at you. Look at us all,
smiling and waving, younger. The whole thing is inside your head.


What you recall are impressions; we have the facts. We called the tune.
The secret police of your childhood were older and wiser than you, bigger
than you. Call back the sound of their voices. Boom. Boom. Boom.

Nobody sent you away. That was an extra holiday, with people
you seemed to like. They were firm, there was nothing to fear.
There was none but yourself to blame if it ended in tears.


What does it matter now? No, no, nobody left the skidmarks of sin
on your soul and laid you wide open for Hell. You were loved.
Always. We did what was best. We remember your childhood well.

6 comments:

mandy lifeboats appeal said...

Hi C

Love poetry and this is a gem E and you came across.

The thing I like about poetry is that it can be a story without having to read a book. It can be a snapshot of something that the reader interprets and finds their own relevance within.

It can be a load of twaddle at times...but that boils down to personal taste and sometimes snobbery.

It is an optional, expansive and often enhancing extra to life.

Words are sometimes all that can be offered...hey, sometimes they hit the spot.

Disillusioned said...

Thanks, Mandy.
I love this too. I love the way it speaks about memory - about different people having different truths. But I also like that it does, as you say, tell a story. You can hear so much pain behind the words. It's a powerful thing.

MMP said...

I watched C-A D read this poem earlier on this year.
Almost reduced me to tears.....except that I was surrounded by hundreds of teenagers!

Disillusioned said...

Yes, MMP.
I did a double take when I read it for the first time. As in, "How can she know me?"

Very powerful writing. Would love to have heard her read it.

sally said...

Your fabric postcards are stunning. You really are very talented. And that song you introduced me to a few days ago..I can;t tell you how many times I have played it. It has got me through the last few days. It must have come from God,,inspired, and just what I needed. Thank you. I am off to buy the album!

Disillusioned said...

Thank you Sally. Glad you enjoyed the Indigo Girls song. I have so many of their CDs now and love them all.