A Father-Son Relationship: A poem by Christian Michael Lagura Yacapin

Fighting Words 2019: Christian Michael Lagura Yacapin is 15 and a student at CBS Westland Row, South Cumberland Street, Dublin 2

I can’t understand why we clash so much. Looking back I’m demented. Photograph: iStock

I can’t understand why we clash so much. Looking back I’m demented. Photograph: iStock

 

You’ve never listened to me

And I was submissive,

Fixing me as if I was a faulty product.

My mouth shut down,

Stitched up by the sound of your voice.

Miserable at the idea that I was broken.

You still think you’re in the right.

You cease to see that I’ve grown.

I am a serpent

And you are a lion,

Neither of us willing to back down.

I am infuriated

And so are you,

Each with

The determination to win.

She told me not to be scared,

Not to stay quiet.

She is never on my side.

I couldn’t fight back in life.

Now I’m reborn.

I’m changing.

Hurt by the fists and words in the air,

Hot-headed and hostile.

I can’t understand why we clash so much.

Looking back I’m demented.

Tears flowing from my eyes

Like a current flowing through a river.

The pain in my chest

A vice squeezing my heart.

I’m at a dead end.

Staring at a locked door ahead of me,

The only one who can open it is you.

Something so shattered.

Someone so separated.

A father-son relationship.

This poem took shape at one of the workshops run by Fighting Words, which was founded by Roddy Doyle and Seán Love in 2009 to nurture young writers around Ireland. It is now in Dublin, Belfast, Cork, Mayo, Wicklow, Galway, Donegal, Kerry, Wexford and Kildare