When mummy left

When mummy left

I became mother

To father, sister, and to brother

She left so little

She left so much

She left and never kept in touch

What could we do

What could we say

To one who simply went away

We cried so much

We cried for years

Until we had run out of tears

Your face cream jar

And broken jewellery

Were all you left to remind me

Who it was

I was replacing

A muddled aim which I was chasing

I was just nine

They, three and six,

I helped get dressed, fed Weetabix

My fun and games

I put away

I grew adult in just one day

The teachers knew

They said ‘no tears’

I toughened up over the years

I met a boy

A sweet, kind thing

I pushed and pulled and punished him.

I could not trust

It could not be

I so in love, loved completely

The years they passed

He never left

A child’s fears he put to rest

I was not hers

She was not mine

Our link together lost in time

Time doesn’t mend

Time doesn’t heal

A child’s loss, pain she could feel

I lost my mum

I lost my me

Both child and mother in one body

I see all, hear all

But could not see

The way I could return to me

Could not forget

Could not forgive

A little girl struggling to live

Until one day

I realised

We saw the world through the same eyes

I am her

And she is me

I should have loved unconditionally

Myself a child

Left, lost, alone

I picked up, held as if my own

I held on tight

I soothed and then

I found that I was me again

One person

One woman all my own

A shock to see how much I’d grown

My life is good

Love, friends, family

Because I set my small me free.


© Jennifer Winterburn


4 thoughts on “When mummy left

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.