Frankie goes back

to see the counsellor again;
he’s not sure why he’s there.
He’s hot in her small room
and loosens his school tie.
Julia smiles:
How are things?
I’ve bin ter the Youth group,
it’s canny, like,
I met a friend..
he stops; she prompts him gently:
And how is it at home?
Everyone’s up a height.
I divvent kna if it’s me or what..
In what way?
Well, it’s all bin different
since me Nana passed away.
I got beaten up a few weeks ago –
I’ve never seen me Ma
cry like that. Me Dad
blamed me as usual; they sorta
had a row about that.
And for smokin.
Julia nods:
Death throws even tiny problems
into sharp relief. People
reassess their roles in families –
a lot of shifting and adjusting –
it’s not an easy time.
Frankie stares at his hands, she adds:
Do you feel ok about exams?
We can always write a letter,
medical evidence to explain
your family circumstances.

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