Larkin’s Guide to Parenting

There are times in life when only poetry will do.  Philip Larkin expressed a lot of his frustrations through his poetry and I’m convinced there would be a lot less violent crime if potential criminals learned to express themselves through words instead of through fists and guns.  So, in the interests of preventing a violent crime in our household, here is my poem about living with teenagers, inspired by that famous poem of Larkin’s with the four-letter word in the first line:

Larkin’s Guide to Parenting

You have to let your kids fuck up

you may not want to but they will,

leave coke stains in your coffee-cup

while running up the leccy bill


By day, he’s welded to his bed

and getting up for class? – forget it;

by night he plays the Walking Dead:

your heart bleeds, and you have to let it


There’s no solution; but just wait

till they have offspring in their turn

and suffer the exact same fate

then you can laugh as, finally, they learn.

© Liz Gray, 2014

Kirk out


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