Oh Dear
by Sandy Phillips

I was fifteen, needed some cash.
A woman approached a group of us girls,
“Anyone interested in a bit of babysitting?”
I responded, and the job was mine.
Just a couple of hours between one parent going out,
The other, getting home. It suited me.
Not every day, but different days, the husband
Would walk to my house to tell me when.
The toddler, was a chubby little lad, smiling, trusting.
I would play peek-a-boo, sing nursery rhymes, or
Just watched him with his toys, then put him to bed.
One day he just wouldn’t go. He cried and cried,
Hit the wall with his head. Alarmed I told his mother,
“Take no notice, he’ll stop,” I found this hard.
On nights he slept, I listened to records,
Mostly classical, some made me cry, don’t know why.
I read a book of theirs about Jack Dempsey, a boxer.
Not my usual reading matter, it was just laying about.
I took my boyfriend there when I didn’t receive information
Early enough and I had already arranged to meet him.
(No mobile phones in those days of 1955)
When she told me I couldn’t, I said I needed more notice.
She replied that her husband informed me five days ago.
I said, no it was yesterday. It came about
That he was having an affair. I left.

IMAGE: “Woman and Child” by Pablo Picasso (1922).

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: In writing this piece about My first job, I had a longer story in mind, but thought it would not capture the reader written in that way. I therefore aimed to relate the story in sharper groups of words.

sandy phillips

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Sandy Phillips, a retired teacher, has written her first book, The Narrow Doorway, about the psychic experiences she has encountered throughout her life. She has written an article for the Psychic News published last year and will have another in the Two Worlds in the near future. She also writes essays, stories and poetry. Another major interest is painting and the arts. She has had exhibitions of her own and has participated in many. She once had a sculpture accepted by the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition.