‘Status’ by Raymond Antrobus


When you find out your dad had a heart attack,
you wonder if you should update your Facebook.
You wonder if one parent less should be your status.

Maybe you change your profile picture,
upload one of you in your dad’s arms as a white cotton baby,
where his face is a bright heart
                             smiling into your black newborn eyes.

People will like that.

It will make your relationship look like the kind you wanted,
          like he always knew how to hold you.

Like how he held your handlebars on the bike you wanted that he bought
and you wobbled through London Fields and he said pedal faster as
he ran,
ran beside you, and you screamed don’t let go, don’t let go
and he said you’ll be fine and you wanted to believe him and then he let go and you rode, rode
and he threw his arms in the air and bellowed that’s my boy, that’s my boy!

But that’s not what happened.

It’s what was meant to have happened.
(from Shapes & Disfigurements, Burning Eye Books)
Interviews, Poetry, Spoken Word Events and Social Commentary by Raymond Antrobus can be viewed here. His first book, a collection of poetry & conversations, Shapes & Disfigurements is OUT NOW from Burning Eye Books.