One night like most nights
Making the long drive home
From working with a damaged child
Somewhere down the road.
My mobile rang and I listened
To Denver’s soft whispered voice
“Hi can I ask you a question?”
“You know you always can.”
“What do you want to ask me?”
Silence just the sound of the road
So I said “What’s the question Denver?”
She said “It’s kind of hard to explain.”
“Go ahead anyway I’m listening
I have plenty of time just ask away”
In a slow voice I heard a little girl say
“Can I have a blood transfusion?”
“I don’t want my blood anymore”.
I asked her to explain so Denver replied
“She told me my dad isn’t my dad
My blood will prove he isn’t my dad.”
“So if I get my blood taken out
And have my dad’s blood put in
They won’t take me away from him”.
Denver was 9 years old today.
She was asleep when her naked
Raving drunken mother broke in
And in a hate filled rage
Killed the pets of the children.
She explained her mother phoned
For her birthday with the news
“Your dad isn’t your dad
He’s somebody you don’t know”.
“But Rob” Denver said
“My dad’s really my real dad.
He’s been there forever.
He’s the only one I’ve known.”
“If I have his blood
They won’t take me away.”
She sighed when she heard me say
“I won’t let them take you away.”
I met Denver’s dad today
He smiled when he saw me
Shook my hand and said
Denver’s grown she’s OK
And living her life
After a childhood
Straight out of hell
Ten years before
He came asking for help
Somehow it doesn’t
Feel that long to me now.
And the memory of that child
Her struggles with such pain
It’s still so strong I can feel it
But I also see her smile again.
And before he bade me good bye
He thanked me for the advice
And the quiet words to reassure
His small lost child who phoned
Because she knew she could
At times when her worries grew
Too much for her heart to take
And now Denver’s growing too.
From my poetry collection “Time to Heal”.