Groundhog day. A poem by Elizabeth Woolfenden

Oh, Bless him
He’s come down to pee
Relaxed as normal
Peeing in the Tupperware
With his hair all spiky innocence
smelling of yeasty sleep
Whilst I review the day
With a heavy heart.

I woke up
Tired because the screen kept me
And it’s groundhog day
My foot’s still broken
Why won’t it heal?
The kids are hungry
And breakfast begins…
Coffee, Avocado on toast
With lemon juice, coriander, basil and salt
My two children asking questions
That I really don’t know the answer to.
Emptying my urine
Because their father is
Stuck, uncomfortably far

I scramble to keep up,
There is a butterfly batting against the kitchen window to rescue.
A fallen ukulele to pick up
Compost to empty and the endless washing up
Neither want to help
There are sensitive feelings to navigate now
It’s not nine and I am already tired

I try to get Spotify to work
A flash of a song
And suddenly I am dancing at 5 am in a Spanish nightclub aged 22
And the freedom shocks me

Here in my green paradise
With the plants ready to negotiate
I am wondering how my 82 year old mother in remission will cope with
12 weeks alone in London with her sharp memories and regrets
It’s a pang
And then a cacophony
3 insatiable cats I never wanted
Flinging themselves at our door
And I haven’t even the strength to let them in

A bottle of white wine gets brought down the track by a Belgian woman navigating complications
To be hidden from the Muslims next door
Who pray and shine
Knowing that death is a given
Who infects who?
Who is strong now?
I just don’t know that anymore
All I know is that;
it’s the tulip that showed bright red as I bled,
then opened indecently
And now will die
That teaches me more than facebook ever could.

And at one in the morning
At the end of the day
As I lie in the bath
Another day of hopping
On my tight thigh
I send love
To us all.

And I must sleep before:
Groundhog day begins

Lego, trampolines, budding breasts, stories to write,
Avocado on toast
With lemon juice, coriander, basil and salt down my cheeks.


I am an artist living off grid with my family in The Alpujarras

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