Tuesday, December 08, 2009

Family of Two (by Lucas Dell)

My family is unique,
We live differently than most.
Not worse, not better
Just different.
Mum and me

A bit like an echidna
Prickly and protective
Sometimes very prickly.
Not all the time though.

Somewhat like a family of bats,
She says I smell like one,
Musty, like a closed-off room.
My room is my musty cave.

A lot like a koala
Close, protective of heights
I used to cling to her like a koala,
When I was a kid.

A whole lot like the Tasmanian Devil
Having babies when she’s older…
Watchful, and scary if you mess with me.
She’s can be really scary, but mostly just noisy.
Mainly when I don’t do something.
Like cleaning my room

Our family is like all these animal families.
Different yet same.
She cares for me like theirs do.
Alone.
Without help
I never met my father, either.
All of us…
Fatherless families
Not worse off
Not better.
Different from some
But no less happy,
We are happy
Just us
A family of two.

Yes.
I come from a family of two.
Is that true?
But a family is three.
Not mine.
It began as two but changed when I began.
From three to two, again.
A family of my Mum and me.

I spoke to him once.
To ask if he wanted to meet me
before we left for another place.
He said no.
I wondered why.
I wonder why.
Still.
I wonder many things.
Is he a good man?
Or is he not.
My thinking makes him neither.
He is, who he is.
Someone I don’t know.
Never met.
Probably never will.
But I can’t talk about that
when I have ‘now’.
You probably wonder.
Having only a Mum.
No grandparents on one side,
others too far to know.
What is that like
growing that way?
A family of two.

It’s different.
She’s different.
She teaches me things
I might need to know.
She is a woman
and she teaches me things
she knows.
But she never taught me
to wrestle.
She never taught me
to hug. The hug of a boy and man.
She never taught me
how to read maps.
She never taught me that sometimes
you really don’t need to talk.
She never taught me
to fight.
She never taught me
to shave.
She never taught me
how to tinker with things.
She never taught me
to leave the toilet seat up.
She never taught me
about the taste of a cold beer on a hot day.
She never taught me
to aim my pee at the porcelain or the shower drain.
She never taught me
to use deodorant when then was no time for a shower.

But she listened.
She listened to me.
So I learned to listen.

She teaches me
grace
and kindness
And shares her knowing.
Our family of two.

It braces me now
for my journey.
The one I will begin.
Unafraid,
stepping strong,
boldly into future
and destiny

and I step confidently
On my right path
…because
she never taught me.

Lucas Dell
(16 years old)

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