Bathing in Thomas Lawrenson’s Kitchen Sink
Here’s to bygone times when Snapchat and Instagram
were just a twinkle in the app developer’s eye. And to us,
the perfect models without the incessant need to pose and pout .
As babies and toddlers, we sat in tepid water with
gummy grins; surrounded by Johnson’s Baby Bath bubbles.
Our ever-expanding family tree – brothers and sisters, nephews and nieces;
photo albums full of Truprint coloured snaps . Seventeen grandchildren
all-in-all with the demonic red-eye from the camera’s auto-flash.
Artex adorns our living room walls
in different shades of cream and beige.
Garlands of green, gold and red hang
high across the ceiling. Gaudy baubles
dangle down from artificial branches,
mingled with the tinsel on the tree.
My chestnut brown hair cascades
down my back in ringlets, as I sit
cross-legged tearing the wrapping
from my presents – a Saisho Cassette
Player, Star Glo and a Care Bear or two.
This year my Barbie will be dating
Michael Jackson instead of Ken.
My dear brothers
another pair of undies and socks,
containing your excitement in
stifled teenage yawns. Yearning to go
back to sleep with the half-eaten tins
of cold rice pudding under your beds.
Her lion’s mane fell like strands of spaghetti
over the laminated Serengeti ,
hurling the hunter gatherer’s utensils –
a javelin piercing his cheating chest.
With sweaty paws she swiped the betraying git –
her dented pride swallowed by the cess-filled pit,
her duelling stance keeping their cub at bay
the plates of fried wildebeest crashing hard.
Smacking, snarling lips – unrelenting roaring,
there would be no easy sleeping or snoring –
in the shattered jungle of their beaten hearts
the loved-up watering hole forever dry.