Days of painting it will take

To cover it up. What on Earth

Possesses a man to paint a room

This colour, and a bathroom at that?

The hue is alarming, it appears

Suddenly as I open the door to go

In, and with violence:

The most awful shade of murder.

What perverted crimes were committed in here?

What stains were left that required

Such a scarlet drenching? It’s not a room

You’d want to bath your kids in,

With their chunky pink legs and blond hair:

They might stain like dye on petals.

The white paint goes on the roller thickly

And takes to the wall in long, sticky strokes.

It is beginning to fade.

I will lie in the bath and look at the walls,

Look at the fresh coat of white paint

And know that there are layers just beneath

The surface. Raw and bright and bloody.

David N Rose