Our flat is tiny and poky and ever so slightly falling apart but the roof holds under our head and the police cars no longer wake us and the heart of the city still seethes within our reach like an end of level boss battle that we never get round to playing. The girls have finally fallen asleep next door and my wife is out dining with her student buddies and I am here with the solitude I continually wish for not knowing what the hell I am meant to do with it like a virgin fumbling with a bra strap. I am a parent now, one of those strange loping creatures that makes the exact opposite of a dramatic entrance at the school gates ten times a week. I still write poems but I am no longer a poet because being a po-faced wanker takes more effort than I can ever muster while trying to keep my offspring and houseplants from terminal wilting. It’s a similar logic to changing the washer on a dripping tap it either doesn’t make you a plumber or it makes everybody a plumber. It’s past ten pm and I’m yet to write a poem and the kitchen tap goes drip drip drip but I have got plumber’s block.

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