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Death rattle

* This a poem that I wrote whilst waiting and comforting my mom and my gran before she passed over in March 2018, from vascular Dementia and Alzheimers. I wrote it while waiting for her to let go of Life. It’s a Morbid (and possibly strange) thing to do when someone you love is dying in front of you. This was one way of expressing my powerlessness, over a period 3 days watching someone cling on to this Life).*

Death rattle

Reminiscent of an uprising of crickets ready to battle.
Stare at a puffed updiamond heart
Drumming inside an empty cage.
Birds ripped apart.
Gargoyle stares ignored.
Folk bumble about unaware of what’s in store for us all,
The breathe of Hades lingers
then makes a dash for scant flesh and bones.
Meat is not this gods instrument
Lust causes the call for more drones.
Sponge, moisten parched parted lips
Raven signals the ire of its whips.
The ones who don’t loose it in bedlam excite
Invites all loved ones to rally around
Stands by door.
Stands back a while
Admires its own power.
A moment to savour
Every door closed,
Each breath cloys,
Begs for enough fare to cross the distance to embrace Elysium air.
Today everyone shall know how close we are to parting from brown soil.
Hatched chickens,
Babies born in Cumbersome air.
The cycle must complete before we can emerge reborn.
Death is inevitable as necessary as life is to the Cumbaya of springs first show of petal.
When you look at the beginning of this new dawn,
Know that when you stand back in awe
Its because you have felt the chill of winters soul depart.
Shed a tear for the snowman who brought our youth so much joy.
Appreciate death.
Stare it in the face.
The sun chants
counting his rosary beads.
Tomorrow never dies.
Trying to type something while listening and watching my grandmother dying.
I support the assisted dying law.
This is inhumane!
A selfish farce.
Happy mothers day,
Wherever you go
Wherever you roam
I hope that it is a place as magnificent as earths revellers make it out to be.

Ma petit fripon. Je t’aims toujours


the Cull

Composure show your best face
Daisy don’t make it hazy – leave out the ‘just in case’ can of mace.
Three announced pregnancies delivered in one week
One Stork wraps a cord around emotions -trachea.
 Manipulation in search for a vein
hooked up intravenously
suffering from a bout of the sickness days gone by,
Day spent prodding a familiar corpse
Lavender eye shadow caked on.
An ex-hookers heinous crime of remorse.
Blend in shades of elegance, class cuts above diamonds
-less valuable than the African  Congo.
Kleenex tissues – repentance from deeds of liberation.
 There is closure in this hymn
that is how sacrilegious people turn as quick as the wind doth blow.
New chapter.
ink spilt
No more drama.
Welcome to the real world -energy in motion kinetic.
Some call it Karma.
Squeaky clean – naked child of the nugget -Midas the king.
Bronchial Bengal licking furballs off her skin.
Arthritic tail.
spots and stripes.
Don’t leave me, Madam.
wailers of bandits ready for the first of half a dozen fights.
Interrupt the flow 2 kg of feather dynamite
How does this writer get away with posting anything credible?
Animals on the uprise.
No more, humans.
Determined by free will.
Save our earth from true predators.
A life is a life,
a loss is a loss.
no one gives a toss
don’t matter who involved in the kill.
Overspill of copper coil excreting from a vulvic cave
Great expectations.
Pompei disaster – a necessary tragedy to inspire the seventh wave.
counting on all hands and fingers
I fear I’m not the only one.
canned laughter emerges in the background.
Playground vacant.
Trashed children abscond to the house occupied by Delirium’s son.
Emotion packs a punch in three
washing machine forgets it’s own no spillage codified key.
Rage -crimson flag.
Blood spill.
‘All hail the Spanish bull!’
Gunshots fired -the loss of the human cull.
Grief lapses in streams of nonsequential dreams.
it’s obvious what unravels when we are pulled at the seams.
Mind score.
Damp music sheets obscure the cup of the holy grail.
Green lights flash.
Don’t hesitate -before long you won’t be able to walk
it’s a condition in frail.
life and Death lie,  spooning- side by side,
build the bridge
equality in each parlour
you seek to ride.
Scared crows
murder the last heart blackened by holding on.
The injustice of the furies coup
bow your heads in shame,
You are not the only ones who suffer.
Time to sing a different song.

My venture with her Dementia

*REPOST pour ma Gandmere and for feeling helpless*

For she’s a jolly good fella… For she’s…. a she is..

not even a fella

She’s 83 today.

Big deal, right? 

 what is so special about her lying in a state care home in a periwinkle neglige?

She is someone I dread going to see -every single week.

I won’t stop going – even when every at every visit, I have to protect every orifice from catching the decay lingering in the air.  The food smells like an institution – a broth of flavoured purgatory.

This is not the final destination- I will take the unknown every time. 

Staring death in the face – eye to eye.

She fights with every breath.

‘Tu veux du jus?’ says, I  – mentally fumbling about for something to fill the time. I pour her a glass of watered-down juice.

she grunts and moans in feral tones – I assume she means oui.

Usually, I am really comfortable  at free flowing . This doesn’t  flow  so well.  I’m in the thick of it. It’s a plot,alright. I’m standing too close to it to fill it with flowery words. but I have to get this out of my head.

My head shouts:



Turn around.

Salute me.

Do something.



 Over and over arrows laced with commands to make me revolt or dissolve. 

I’m  not so sure anymore.

I’ve got no other vices.

Thought about having a drink, taking more valium than I should but the outcome is always the same.

So, I sit here trying to process my thoughts. Align my feelings – they are like every kind of liquorice all sorts, except for the actual plain ones. The ones I look for when I want a taste of Life.

You don’t always get what you want. Well, you may have a winning streak for a while but you don’t know where you are truly going to end up, do you?

Sure. we have goals – Do you know with absolute certainty that no obstacle will come in the way and prevent that from happening?

Hey, Don’t stop the fight. We need more of you.

I’m not here to put you on a downer. 

Tripwire, I fall into the firing line. A spray of bullets rains through me.  Visualise it on a time-lapse sequence.  Don’t call me a hero. I am a coward. 

I see her fight.

83 years old.

She can’t remember,

can’t talk, 

she can’t even walk. 

The rings she has been put through. It’s not evil it’s truly wicked. 

She is so divine if only I could make her all fine.

Skin flawless. A  wooden doll. so tiny.  She has so much fire.

 Burn in hell, Weak? they said.

 She had it easy. (Life.) She didn’t for the fucking record.

 Stop the record!

Now  I can take the needle and jab any mother fucker in the eye, who dares to judge her with their hypocritical, artificial, over consumed minds. 

It’s like like the song – easy like a Sunday morning.

We all get at least one of those days – some have a more fortunate hand.

When will this be over?

When is she going to die?

Another person, I love and could have done more for.

No, no

No regrets!   the little sparrow bursts out a melody enough to make me weep.

Here I am bawling – feverishly knitting a   blanket infused with Tsunami waves, suffocating myself, wallowing- staring at her – All I want to do is start hollering. 

If I do I know I will get collared.  One apprehension is enough for one day.

I get to be alone with her.

She sucks up at least half a beaker of juice.

 I love you, gran’

Her eyes glisten – a meadow dew-effect. We connected.

She knew I knew she knew I knew. 

It’s that befuddling. 

I couldn’t hear the radio, I couldn’t see the lampshade glow.   All that energy directed me to focus on her mouth.  


 she came out with the most grateful and graceful,

THANK YOU – I have ever heard.  English is not even her native language,

to me – her own granddaughter.

Thanking me for giving her some juice. Seeing her an hour a week. It’s all sluice.

Drink up your purified juice. Punishment does not lie.

I ran out of that place- discombobulated.

Sometimes, I feel nothing. Other times, I am a gibbering wreck but I always have to collect and that is why I am a respected member of the poker face club.

I have my own Ma who needs me. My daughter.

I’ve made some crazy bets.

A lifetime of betting and I see only now, how important it is that I need to take care of myself.

There is a struggle – warfare -conflict within me.

Not thin enough to be hospitalised but thin enough to warrant concern. I still get appraising looks for this form I inhabit in now.

It awakens the Furies inside me. No, you need to accept me for who I am. Whatever shape I transform into. 

I need you to. I need me to.

She is about 5 stone. She eats a lot – can’t put on weight. What a fucking paradox.

I restrict. I know I am putting on weight. I deliberately don’t do cardio exercise anymore.

I do walk a lot  -like them L.A. girls. Power walk my way up   ‘panic attack  ‘hill and finally dwindle down into a corner. Shallow breathing.  It’s better than hyperventilating and heaving. 


Something to do with birth.

I have everything I need to get obliterated- fuck I could OD – I’ve always been the ultimate elusive escapist of life.

I had to talk to myself.

Me? Talking sense to myself.

So it was my Gran’s birthday today.

She is still clinging on to life. She is not hanging out with her fellow homies in the lounge downstairs making cupcakes or doing puzzles – listening to Polly-the ultimate nutcracker, sitting in her favourite chair and swearing.  Put her hands down her pants to feel something. Nobody else cares.

I can’t swallow. These are not the most sprightly of places to visit.

How much longer has she got?

How much longer do we all get?

I wake up every morning to life- I stare at the innocence in the eyes – it’s reflected back to me in my daughter’s eyes.

Still, I  have moments when I contemplate dicing with my own life. gambling it, frittering it away.

To have this kind of raw, exposed insight. To know better – is self-flagellation.

To sit with a belly full of food and a head and heart full of thoughts and emotions

and wonder …

not wander.

I’ve done that far too much.  

Escapology trick 101.

I wonder why I won’t accept my lot.

Am I the only one?


I’m not convinced. I’m sceptical like that. 

I mean sure I’m special but c’ mon……..

I have issues- being a narcissist is not one of them – unless I am having I look like shit – no one liked my selfie post today.

Then it’s all about me mimicking others emotions to get what I want.



I’m not overly whimsical with this post.

On a lighter note me and my husband ( bless him) we fucked so hard yesterday.


We had a round two because I wanted my pleasure.

So I fucked him good and proper. I role-played, Gepetto, in retrospect.

I wasn’t bothered about his needs. For once.

It’s actually a kind of breakthrough for someone like me. 

My Nose is not growing.

I could say so much but I may embarrass him. Oh, hang on. I  do that all the time. That’s why he married me. I am truly one of a kind and so is he.

A perfect match. 

Ladies, you know how when you have been fucked ( I’m not talking about making love and a bit of slap and tickle) I mean when you wake up the morning after?

Cliche phrase alert!

‘John Wayne’ has come out as a woman. It’s all good but its the after-effects of pedalling on a bike, cards t t ticking in the wind, bells tinkering the first time – all that bruising. 

 Serious bicycle abuse.

My  Man- is hurting today. I’m laughing. I’m evil.

Don’t worry he enjoyed it. He keeps making sure I don’t forget it. 😀 

Of course, I was on top.

My ride – my rules.

So I’m gonna leave it there – I think I’ve covered some pretty big themes.

Sex, Life, Death, Abuse.

 I’m done.

Feeling vulnerable now. Do you mind if I put my armour of skin back on? 

If you made it this far – fucking well done.  Not patronising you. I promise. 

Not my usual style of writing. 

Life is short – make it sweet. Stay on top of the game for as long as you can.

These are my words.

* Inspired by my Life, Dementia, thoughts*

Thoughts about eventually

“Freedom is just another word for nothing left to lose’ Janis Joplin

 Today is the first anniversary of my Aunts death.

Long story short: Mid June 2014 She moved to Costa Rica to work. For the 5 months she was there she suddenly couldn’t breathe. The doctor said she had COPD and that she needed to carry a portable oxygen machine with her at all times.

She came back to the U.K. and was admitted into the hospital. She was in the hospital for nearly 2 months being poked and prodded. The doctors didn’t think it was COPD. It transpired that she had fluid in her lungs.

I don’t know if you know the procedure for draining the fluid but I want to tell you so you can understand how brave my Aunt was.

They cut open a hole on of the side her body -fed a tube through the lung to drain the liquid. Yes, she was on morphine but she still screamed out in pain. Then once the fluid is drained they need to dry out the lung. They cut another hole on the other side of her body and blasted talcum powder into her lungs. Yes, she was awake for all this.

We all knew what she had. Two months later, she was told she had cancer and there was no more they could do. She went to stay with my Ma. I went to visit her the night she got back home.

I couldn’t stay long, I said.

I have so many things I need to do,I said.

We must have a movie night, kissed her on the cheek.

Then went on my way attending to my busy important life.

7 a.m. 22/02/2015



“Daisy! Something is wrong with Babs she is not moving, I don’t know she won’t answer me –BABS! BABS! –   I’m calling an ambulance.”

“Ma … Ma?”  No answer. I sat up in bed and did not react and then I thought – fuck this is not good.

One call and a taxi ride later,

I get out of the taxi as the paramedics are carrying my Aunt down the stairs in a wheelchair and into the ambulance. Pulse monitor flashing 16.

We were allowed to ride with her. Get to the hospital. She is rushed in for emergency care. The doors slam in our face. A doctor comes out and leads us to a quiet room to wait. We wait.

A doctor comes back in. My aunt is stabilised but she will be on machine support for the remainder of her days. What do we want to do?  Ma and I look at one another. Ma’s face crumbles.

“No, we let her go! she has to go no more pain” I speak up. Mom is nodding. The decision is made. No time to call other family members. We are allowed to enter the room. We pull up two chairs and watch as she dies in front of us, snowed under morphine. It takes seemingly forever for her to go.

We sing Janis Joplin’s ‘Merecedes Benz’ .





The death rattle finally comes and it takes forever for her to drown in her own spit.

“MOMMY” my cousin rushes into the room. We all turn back to my Aunt. She has gone. It is all over.

60 years of knowing her alive and 20 minutes knowing her on her way to death.

She didn’t want to be chained to an invisible leash- an oxygen machine.

My aunt was awesome, everyone got on with her, we were great friends -always giggling, she didn’t take shit from me. She was a true hippy and a traveller. She could read palms. She fought a good fight. Life was hers -she owned her life. Life did not own her until the end.  We used to joke that I became  a drug addict because she used to sing me ‘Puff the magic dragon’ without knowing what the other meaning of the song is.

One last song


FUCK TATI I MISS YOU. I LOVE YOU. Wish I could hear you laugh again.

It isn’t a train smash

I don’t usually like to read posts about loved ones who are dead. I guess this post and my feelings on it has changed my perspective. All those loved ones departed and those left behind deserve to honour their loved ones. A big life lesson learned.  It is the  9 th January and that means it is your birthday. I still miss that laugh of yours. Stupid Cancer. Do you know it has been over 10 years since you died and they still don’t have a cure for Cancer?

I know you were the type of man that would have probably healed yourself but you didn’t have time. It was too late. It had spread throughout your body too much. Reflecting back, I know you knew you had it. You were in denial even when you were diagnosed twice. Three times. We moved countries to get you the best treatment. We were all in denial. You were indestructible even staring death in the face. You brushed off cancer like an irritating wasp.

Some people I know hated you for your business ethics but damn you were a smashing businessman and you loved your family- wholeheartedly. You didn’t want in -house fighting and took the blame for a lot of our mistakes. You wanted peace.

I know you were far from perfect. I mean a lot of your dealings were under handed but no more underhanded that a corrupt police officer or a government worker. Yes,  you took but you gave too. 

You were a millionaire twice over in your life.  You were one of the first people to fly all over the world in the  now defunct Concorde. Remember that time when I was in Disney world?  It was Disney worlds 50 th anniversary. It was my 5 th birthday present.

I was being a rotten spoilt child and refused to get in the bath. You were less than a few hours away from catching the Concorde to get to  a meeting. Business suit on and briefcase in the other hand. You thought you could reason with me.

You managed to be a success in that department with most people. You sat on the edge of the bath, pragmatical and cajoling me. I was so not getting in that bath – Then you slipped and fell into the bath. You were not angry but we both laughed. We were in hysterics.

You embraced every religion you could think off. You could speak over 5 languages. You would walk into a room and all eyes were on you. Your charisma and those eyes -corn blue -mesmerised people. You were a descendant of Rasputin. You had to be!   The business deals were usually signed on the dotted line and you had only just sat down to discuss business.

You got locked away in Vienna for a few years. Someone had to be the fall guy. Your crime was no worse than that of another person high up in government and politics did. you did skin the top of the profits but the rest went to the poor. I saw it with my own eyes.

You loved Gran with all your heart. She was not an easy woman. Stunning and charming, yes. But things happen in life and you were far away. Gran didn’t want to be in U.SA at that point in her life, and I guess your needs got the better than you. Like it does for millions of people over the world. Even now as I type someone is betraying another. Who am I to judge?

You were still doing business after chemotherapy. That shit wiped you out. We ended up in a villa in the South of France because of your business acumen. You were riddled with Cancer. Could hardly move. 

You never touched drugs. Never sold them or dealt in arms. The dodgy business you did was what most western governments do. You knew the politics. you knew the game. You only drank vodka when you knew your days were numbered. 

You came from Paris to South Africa with Gran – and extended your family from Madagascar to Zimbabwe and then settled in South Africa. 

You both made a huge family and gave them so much. Grandchildren included.  You loved the innocence of youth. You wanted children to stay children for as long as possible. You wanted to keep them safe from the harshness of our world. I remember how I used to boast to my friends you were a doctor. Well, you did say you were. Years later, you made me laugh so much when you pulled out your certificate and it was signed by some top official in post-apartheid  by a man called Buthalezi. You were indeed a doctor.

A doctor in economics. True, you didn’t need to go to college to learn that.  It still makes me smile.

Your parents came from Russia fleeing the revolution 0f 1918 to Paris. You grew up in the slums of Paris. Your brother Vladimir was ill from a young age and your sister Helene was as frivolous and sensual. She know how to have a good time.

We used to talk so much about why I wanted to be so thin. He wanted to know why I was compelled to use drugs. It was like a cure he couldn’t find. Rehab after rehab. No cure. He used to take me outside onto the balcony. The sea was so close you could almost feel it. You could smell the saltiness in the air. You tried to teach me mindfulness. You were an eccentric, well ahead of your time. Everyone is on about mindfulness these days.

Today I feel ashamed that I made you take me to my drug dealer in a Rolls Royce, I might add.. to score.  I think the drug dealers were disgusted in me. A white girl, rich and who had no visible problems or deformities to see, buying a drug on a par with Heroin.

I have got better. I have. I’m not 100% but I wish you could see me now. I know for a fact we would still be living in Miami or France. You loved with a generous heart. There was always laughter in the family.  I don’t know how you would have handled seeing Gran the way she is. In a care home – in the last stages of dementia. Maybe it is a good thing you never got to see her like she is now. It would have crushed you, not being able to make her better. It would have driven you mad. I know it.

You were a legend

And in my eyes and my heart you still are. 

I hope you are still making deals with your God -whoever that may be and where ever that may be. 

I love you .