Baby Blues Ballad
(with apologies to Whittier's 'The Changeling')
They cited 'Post-natal depression'.
They said that she'd come round in time
but Mother, devoid of expression,
insisted 'That baby's not mine!'
The Midwife returned in the morning.
The Doctor had promised to phone.
The Husband said 'I give you warning-
we can't leave these two on their own.'
The infant lay wriggling and squawking
when Grandma hove-in from the south
(for Mother, by now, wasn't talking).
But Grandma had such a big mouth
and simpered 'You ought to be grateful
for life that's so newly begun'.
Poor Mother just whimpered 'It's hateful-
that thing lying there's not our son.'
They took her away the next morning
(the neighbours said she looked quite calm).
They took her away without warning,
a cannula stuck in her arm.
Well, Father took part-time employment
and Grandma -O, she was a brick.
The baby just gurgled enjoyment
(whilst 'Mummy' remained 'on the sick').
At six-months -just after his cat-nap
and sworn oaths no bairn ever knew-
Babe flew round the house, out the cat-flap
with 'Daddy, you bastard, I'm through'.
Who said that this world isn't evil?
Who said God's not having a laugh
when innocent mums get the needle
and Satan quotes Sylvia Plath?
The devil's a detail you'd never
want suckled-up under your breast.
Psychiatry isn't so clever-
it's clear now that Mother knew best.
Kevin Saving © 2009