Family Allowance

Family Allowance long poem

Photo by Allie Holzman


Today I smiled as a memory came through,
Remembering how I got angry with you,
I climbed onto the counter, 8 years old,
Never one to do as I was told.

I wanted something in a cupboard so high,
I knew you would say no and make me cry,
So I decided to get it all by myself,
I climbed my way up to the very top shelf.

I got distracted by the things I found,
So I decided to have a good rake around,
I’d never been up in this cupboard before,
I decided to stay and look even more.

I found the box with the medicine in,
A rather old looking rusty cake tin,
I got excited when I spotted some letters,
This was a chance to make my reading better.

I picked up what looked like a little cheque book,
Oooh I think I will have a wee look,
In horror I realised what I could see…
All of these years you’d been stealing from me!!!!

“Family Allowance”….well, it said my name,
I seen it had been cashed time and again,
How could you take all my pennies away,
I jumped down to confront you, hear what you’d say.

I didn’t stick around for an explanation,
To me I was certain of the situation,
It was only as an adult I understood,
Your “Family Allowance” was used as it should.

You kept me safe, warm and dry,
You fed me, clothed me, always tried,
To do your best on what little you had,
The money you didn’t get from my Dad.

Birthdays, Xmas, you bought me toys,
Replaced the trainers that I destroyed,
You paid for me to go on many school trips,
Money for that and money for this.

I smile when I remember that day,
Asking you what you had to say,
You weren’t stealing my money from me,
You were being my Mum, I just couldn’t see.

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