by Paul Brookes

“You’re not wearing that!” our lass says.
“It keeps me bonce warm,” I reply.

“It leaves a line round your head.
Try a beanie. Look a bit modern at least.”

I try a beanie and am reminded
of my Nanna’s tea cosy. At least

I’ll warm the pot. I let the leaves
tumble in my head colouring up

to make my thoughts strong
tasty and refreshing. “It’s a bit

tight,” I say. She replies, “Because your head’s
too big and stuffed with nonsense.”

Here try this snapback. “A baseball cap.”
“No. You wear it with peak at back.”

“How do I keep sun out my eyes?”
She sighs and says, “Wear it how you want.”

PHOTO: The author in his cap.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: Strange how marriage becomes a battle around small objects. The whole of the marital agreement and sometimes the passion that in early years you expended in lovemaking is involved in this battle for identity. An.identity that is often a third person, often not physical that is a combination of you both.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Paul Brookes has been writing since he was eleven. He was poetry performer with “Rats for Love” and his work included in Rats for Love: The Book (Bristol Broadsides, 1990). His first chapbook was The Fabulous Invention Of Barnsley (Dearne Community Arts, 1993). He has read his work on BBC Radio Bristol and had a creative writing workshop for sixth formers broadcast on BBC Radio Five Live.