HER OLD MAN 1958 | By: Terry Collett | | Category: Poem - Children Bookmark and Share


Benny and Ingrid
walked along
the New Kent Road
and down the subway

so what happened
to you this morning?
Benny asked

I overslept
Ingrid said

didn't your mum
wake you up?

Ingrid said nothing
for a few moments  

she lost track of time
she said
Ingrid muttered

I saw she had
a black eye
your old man
been at it again?
Benny said
his voice echoed
along the subway walls

she looked at the floor
as she walked and nodded

Benny asked

she shrugged her shoulders

did he beat you
again too?

she looked at him
and nodded
best get on
or we'll be late
she said

they came out
on St George's Road
and walked on
past shops

why'd he beat you?

didn't like it
because I went to church
and sang hymns he said
but maybe
he didn't believe
I went but we did
but he didn't believe me
and hit me

Benny looked at her
and he touched her hand
he's a toe rag
your old man
he said

she said nothing
looked at his hand
in hers

we did go to chapel
and sing didn't we?

yes we did
Benny said
I thought he'd
be pleased you went
to that than going
elsewhere with me
like the park
or a bomb site

they paused at a road
for a passing car

he didn't believe me
she said

they crossed the road
and onwards
towards school

don't tell anyone
will you?
she said  

Benny said
not if you
don't want me too

he released her hand
as they entered
the school
and he went
to the boy's toilets
and she went off
to the classroom

Benny thought
as he peed in the pan
if I was older
and not a kid
I'd get her old man.

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