My mother takes to her bed
when the news is bad.
Her mother drank gin
at 6pm on the dot,
with the radio off.

My father turns the shower
to cold for one minute
every morning.
His father
stood on his head daily
while breathing deeply.

I would like to combine
headstands with gin
but instead
there are days when I find myself
under the blankets

holding my breath.

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About Karin Andersen

Karin Andersen was born in 1960, in Marondera, Zimbabwe. She has lived in France, England, Tunisia and Cape Town but now calls the small village of Suurbraak home, and hopes to grow a food forest there. In her writing she attempts to capture and make sense of the joy and pain of living in this world, and sometimes wishes that her poems would make people laugh rather than sigh. Karin has had poems published in two Sol Plaatjie anthologies, in a collection called A Woman sits down to write, and most recently in Indra's Net, an international poetry collection, as well as online at the Wagon Wheel. She blogs and is a contributing author to the Life Righting Collective's This is how it is anthology.