beaten severely with a foot long twenty pound frozen fruit lolly. Tom Barker Joondalup, Australia 2005


Jean Ringland

My Father’s Hat

We children learned to understand hat messages;
a jaunty angle brought lollies in the pockets
and laughter at the table, brow lower – serious times,
a need for long discussions before homework and bed.
Lower still – late home, the stumble in the hall
and my mother, frozen faced, serving the meal
in silence, while little ones, bewildered,
dared not drop a spoon or spill their milk.


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