No back to black on a white christmas

My neighbour just shimmied past my front room window returning from her nightshift at the care home. She wants to retire but instead she has to work a few more years to get her pension. She is tired and has certainly done her service to the community. I admire her. In-between caring for other people’s elderly relatives she cares for her own mother, grandchildren, daughters.


Care not to fall on the stone slabs outside my front window.

A window covered in coloured snowflakes blue tacked onto the glass.

Last night to the childrens joy it snowed and it snowed. We drew back the curtains and watched the heavy flakes drop. Curtains of white providing a seasonal backdrop to the flickering of the programme playing on the computer screen. Naoise wanted to reach out and touch it. Patrick took in some snow that had landed on top of the car and then he threw it back out again. Really I should have got both children dressed and gone out for a winter wonderland walk, but I felt tired, drowsy, lazy, overfed and slow.

Two too many glasses of red wine and chocolate log and christmas pudding and brandy butter. Too much excess. The consumption makes me feel blacker. I couldn’t stay awake just watching watching the screen. The gas fire lulling me to sleep seated. Naoise on my knee covered by a thick blanket. Four people on a sofa for two. I went to bed. I gave up.

Syd didn’t want me to go to bed, his time with me is limited, but I will shower him with attention on Sunday. The day we have together on our own. All this cooking and hosting perhaps is just a distraction from where my focus should be. I will so miss him when he goes. Only for a week, but each day will slip slowly more quietly, I will feel out of sink. I will sink. I will miss him.

The snow has turned to sludge on the road. The children will be disappointed, its not sledging snow. We love the snow. There are plenty of hills to sledge on here. The sledges have remained redundant. Last winter was so mild there were flurries, but nothing that would stick, nothing sledge able.

I wish that the snow had fallen thicker, then the cars would not zoom past, and the silence would descend.

Two years back the snow lasted weeks and after it fell it turned to thick ice that covered all the pavements so that the only way to travel to nursery was by sledge. I dragged and dragged the sledge along the canal, a fine way for a three year old to travel. All the dog poo, all the mud was encased below the snow and ice. Whiteness temporarily provided a clean path.

Sipping coffee, run out of tea bags. The washer is drying clothes. The pixel pig is sitting upside down on top of the leather sofa. All the crackers are gone from the tree. The branches hang lower and more needles drop. Plates of lego pieces, a lemon conducting watch. Kirikou DVD box. Kirikou was splendid. Kirikou an animation b Michel Ocelot , that begins with a boy child who speaks from within his mothers womb. Watching this film, all the colours, the patterns, the story, the baby hero. It made me want to draw. Perhaps if I had drawn I wouldn’t have felt the blackness. The blackness creeps up on me. The blackness makes me feel tired and slow. The blackness is poison. The blackness. I sit here in my onesey. I enjoy these moments of reflection. I struggle with the hectic. I struggle with the pull from one child to the next. Each competing for my attention.

All I hear is the chug of the washer dryer. All I hear is the train pass behind the house. All I see is the snow, an occasional bird, a pile of washing folded on a chair in the corner of the room. A bag of party poppers that wait to be popped. Only two tangerines left. Its a non- day. A Saturday. An ordinary day. A day for my eldest sister, niece and grand niece and grand nephew to visit. The house will be busy and packed and full and laughter and chaos and washing up will return.

The washing machine beacons with its incessant beep. The oven buzzer sounds. Today I gave myself 30 minutes to write.

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