Parenthood (Graham Clifford)

I’m having a baby man, despite being a man myself.

Let me out, let me out! the bald baby man shouts, impertinent and impatient. He is definitely a Gemini and it is written he must fail his wife and children. 

I carry on with my life as increasingly more of him hangs out of me. There is too much work to do and I work for a charity for the chronically ill prepared.

I’m coming out, I’m coming out! my baby man has been shouting this for weeks. He’s making too much of a big deal of this birth thing. We know he has probably been here before and this is most likely a tax dodge, or a PR scam. 

In the end he slips from me like a wet adder and curls in the corner near with the rat’s nest of cables from my PCs and server. He’s chanting details from tomorrow’s Financial Times – don’t ask me how he knows about tomorrow. Who knows the company he’s been keeping inside of me? 

He is my son. But I haven’t a decent upbringing so the best I can offer is indifference and more of the same. 


Graham Clifford was born in Portsmouth, grew up in Wiltshire and lives in London with his partner and two daughters. His pamphlet, Welcome Back to the Country, and full collection, The Hitting Game are published by Seren. His pamphlet collection, Computer Generated Crash Test Dummies is published by The Black Light Engine Room, and his most recent collection, Well, is published by Against the Grain. He has a MA in creative writing from UEA and is a Head teacher.


image: M. M. Kaufman