In those last days a calm came on the house.
Everyone feared the unexploded bomb.
Molly typed up her thesis. Little Tom
Played with his Lego and a beany mouse.
The office closing hit Dad hard. Expect,  
It said, no help. Live here and be alone,
Unwanted, till you die. His wife had shown
No love for years. The kids had no respect.
The family tiptoes round the wobbling skittle,
Sensing the pressure mounting in their little
Bubble of silence. In Dad's present state
Of mind it wouldn't take too much - perhaps
Just one stray word - to bring complete collapse :
Despair, self-loathing, violence, and hate.

K. M. Payne

If you've any comments on this poem, K.M.Payne would be pleased to hear from you.