I hope the carol singers come back tonight,
with pure songs, tales of joy, family, inclusion.
Their voices are so much sweeter than Tom’s,
the strong one in my head that tries to control me.
My parents spoke to me, they’re away for Christmas,
I must stand on my own two feet. Sam, our spaniel,
helps calm me, but when I wanted to call round,
they told me they’re packing, taking him to kennels.
Tom’s always here, never stops talking, wakes me
by shouting, tells me what to do, says I’m worthless,
a burden, no use to anyone. I turn on Christmas radio,
watch films on TV; they help, a little, sometimes.
Even the doctor can’t see me till January.
And the team aren’t available over the holiday.
Perhaps they would all be better off without me.
I do hope the carol singers come back tonight.
Nicky Phillips lives in Hertfordshire. Her poems have been published in magazines
and online. In 2017 one was nominated for Forward Prize for Best Single Poem. Her
pamphlet Jam in Aisle 3 was published by Dempsey & Windle in 2018.