Sunday, May 17, 2009

Sonia's mourning BEWARE...writing


Sonia's Mourning.

Our Father henry was a tall man,his black hair was slicked back,a gloss of Brylcream. He wore round metal spectacles:and always a suit with a waist coat,watch and chain.
His shoes,struck me as a young girl:so very shiny.

“You see your face her girl...LOOK,Go on look!”

They did.
I always knew when Father was around,those shoes would,Click-Click on the concrete,Click-Click:they'd cry.
Metal nailed,front and back.

“Last ten years these shoes:have no doubt of that my girl!”

I'd smile,yes Father;but to me they were an early warning system.
Six O clock they would tell me ...he's off to work,I'm safe.


“Morning Mr Jones.”

“Morning milkman.” He'd grunt.

Six thirty in the evening.


Quick,get the books out Sonia.
Lovely shoes they were;they spoke to me,a friend who warned me.
They warned Mummy as well.
Ann was small,her hair was old,grey,lifeless! She hardly went out,unless to the village shop or the butchers;no need for fancy hair dos there she'd say,but Father didn't agree.

“Smarten yourself up Ann:get to the mirror now!”

She always seemed to cry so easily. Not like me.

“I'm a good girl,aren't I Father?”

She always wore black,long black skirt,black jumper,black cardigan. She must have been in mourning...for her life,maybe.
She couldn't have been that scruffy though;Saturday night I'd hear Father...

“Come on now!”

The grunts and squeaks,once the clatter of the water jug falling over.
Father drank Saturdays,after dinner:while I played the piano.
When the old clock chimed Eight O clock...

“Stop child. Off to bed with you.”

Mummy looked scared most of Saturday;even when she was preparing our food.
I remember one Saturday morning...Rabbit in the stone sink,the guts,floating in the grey water,the smell,the skin and fur being pulled...wrenched off...a strange sound...Hmmm!

She and the rabbit looked the same...TERRIFIED!

Doctor Whitehouse and Doctor Clement.
Chadwick Mental Hospital.

When I met Ruth Whitehouse she seemed too young to be a proper Doctor,and too nice,she listened to me intently;nodding her head sympathetically:a friend at last.
She did most of the talking;gently probing,feeling me out.

“Yes Sonia,oh dear,did they.
Why did they do that.
You poor girl.”

I liked her immediately. Always smiling.
Her shoes were shiny.
I smiled with her:she understood.

“Can I borrow your lipstick Ruth,it's very pretty,I like red.”

“Do you?
Is it your favourite colour Sonia?”

“Hmm,yes it is.”

“Do you know why you're here Sonia?

Who's that!
Oh yes,Doctor Clement,I'd forgotten he was there.
He's got sensible shoes,and not too well cleaned.
He'll get into trouble for that.
I'll write that down in my report,for later on.
I'd better acknowledge him,otherwise he'll think that I'm strange...I'm not fucking strange,and that's that!

“Yes Doctor,I hit the principle,but she made me,I didn't.”

“Do you want to tell us about it Sonia?”

“She called me Mrs Looney.
I didn't hear her,I think,but I know she did.
They all do...the girls...I've heard them...whispering,laughing at me.
I WON'T have it.
SO I walked into the staff security...
It was break time for her.
She was eating fucking biscuits,fucking biscuits...not worried about me,oh no...fucking Bitch.
That stupid hat,a fucking fruit bowl on her daft head.
Stupid,stupid grey fucking hair.
Smiling she was,smiling at ME!
Laughing at me...I know she was.
I walked over,and in front of everyone:I smacked her real hard across her stupid fucking face...
Ha,that showed em...Silence,shock...Ha.
Then I smashed her over the head...fucking stupid head.
Hit her with a chair!
That showed em..Ha...silence then there was. I showed em good and proper...BITCH,BITCH!

“It's alright Sonia.
You didn't hurt her,you lost your temper that's all,take a tissue...don't cry,it's OK.”

“Thank you,Ruth.
I'm sorry,sorry...I didn''s just...”

“OK,don't worry now Sonia.”

“Thank you Ruth,I like your shoes,can I borrow your lipstick.”

Doctor Clements was very busy:making notes.
He looks very serious...I don't like him...fucking wire glasses.

“Sonia,can you tell us about the girls pet Rabbits?”

“Yes Sir,I can.
Someone killed them Sir.”

“Go on.”

“Well it wasn't me if that's what your getting at.
They found them in the morning all cut up.
A fox must have got them.
I saw them foxes on the playing field.
At night.
When I go for my walks when every ones asleep.
I watched them playing in the moonlight it was good.”

The Rabbits were strangled.”

“Ha,so THEY say.
I don't believe them though.
Foxes bite and scratch.
Why are you looking at me like that.
Your shoes are dirty.
I don't like here...I want to go home now Daddy will be waiting you know.
Father will be very angry now I know.
You'll see.”

Back on the ward,it's always busy;crashing and banging,noise...screams,moans.


Old Tim's saying the Lords prayer.
Over and over.
Vera told me he was a prize fighter;but he got hit too many times...Bad boys.
Then she told me he was an African prince in exile;at 250 pounds and over six foot tall,both of her stories could be true.
He doesn't bother anyone,just says his prayers all day and not another word.
Vera's has a dolly with one arm:called Baby.
She always takes Baby everywhere with her,talking to Baby,dressing Baby.
When we have meals,Vera feeds Baby,she won't let me hold
Baby:no one can.
One afternoon on recreation,Chris Spinks,the chief nurse was teasing Vera about Baby messing herself and smelling the room out...of course Vera was most upset...

“I'm not a bad mother.”
She spat at Spinks.
“Go away, leave me and Baby alone.”

Spinks grabbed Baby and snapped her arm clean off;laughing...

“You daft cow Vera!”
Vera screamed and smashed the table...


It took three nurses' to take Vera away,screaming and kicking.
Spinks scowled at us...

“Keep your mouths shut,or you're next!”

Vera was separated for two days and nights. When she returned she was very reserved and calm:but Baby seemed OK.
Vera,Tim and I shared the small modern mixed ward with James...a dirty unclean drug addict,who ran errands for Spinks and much more I suspect...he was on my list.

Vera and I caught him late at night,crawling under the beds':looking for sex we thought,but no such luck.


I turned on the light.
He jumped into the corner,crouching,naked,staring at us behind closed clenched fists,

“Fuck off,leave me alone you queer bitches.”

He was hunting cockroaches.
He made me feel sick.
I threw up over the grey blankets.
Vera and Baby were both crying.
Old Tim hid under his covers,he knew what would happen next.
Spinks and Dave Berry burst into the room.

“What the fucks this!
Vera shut up or the calm down ward for you.
Sonia you stink.”

A bucket of cold water hit me in the kisser,smack in my face...Shock...I started to cry.

“Leave her Chris,come on Sonia,here let me help you.”

Dave was nice,even when he touched me;not rough like Spinks.
Chris Spinks scowled at James.
He grunted,then began kicking James;over and over.

“It's all your fault Junkie.”

James rolled into a ball and accepted his beating,whimpering,screeching.
Next,Spinks took him by the hair and dragged James into the showers for a scrub down...I don't know why he locked the door,though.
Old Tim hid under his bed with the good Lord.

The next day normality returned:
James was very subdued,although his face bore the brunt of the previous nights events.
Dave Berry told Vera and I to clean up the shower room,as James wouldn't go in there.
It wasn't that bad,spatters of blood and faeces in the sink area. It looked as though Spinks had had a jolly good evening.
Old Tim didn't seem to know what had gone on...lucky Tim.

As the days turned into weeks,spring arrived.
Vera,Baby and I were allowed to walk in the grounds of the hospital;it felt nice to be in the sunshine.
I had on a new floral dress from the Red Cross shop,it's very pretty,red flowers on cream.
I pretended that I was from Africa,I could marry Tim and go back to our village in the bush,raise coffee coloured children. Our straw and mud hut will be lovely,with pictures on the wall and a piano of course.
We could raise Rabbits and Horses...I like Horses,they wear shoes as well.

“Come on Sonia,stop day dreaming silly girl and put some knickers on;that dress is see through...fat bum.”

It is just as well really,old Tim never speaks:it will just be sex,fucking and dirty stuff...well that's no basis for a marriage,is it.
We have a plan,Vera,Baby and me,a secret recipe Vera got from a real witch on calm down ward...
Grass,some twigs with daisies and dandelions,a splash of mud and toenails:all mixed together with water.
We stole an old jam tin from behind the kitchens, out of the rubbish bin.
The plan is,if we can get Spinks to drink it:he'll shrivel up and turn into a big scampering cockroach.
Then we're going to tell James and point out Spinks...and Vera says James will eat him all up...
We had a bit of an argument about the plan ...Vera said

“You look a whore in that dress and Red nail lipstick!”

I left Vera and Baby making the potion.

“I'm not sulking,Vera.

I don't like wearing knickers!”

I look nice in my red floral dress and red lipstick...I'm NOT a whore!
I don't care,bollocks to them.
She said my white shoes don't go with my outfit...what does she know about shoes.
I don't care...shit to Baby as well!
I'm going for a walk,I might meet an African prince.

As I walked up the narrow corridor past the showers,I heard someone crying..


I can sense necks tingling...

The door opened.

“Hello,hello...look it's teacher Sonia.
Come in girl...fancy a bit of detention,do you?
Come on,we won't hurt you...
Just having some fun is all.”

Why did I open the door...
Am I a bad girl.

Spinks and James were lounging on the sink units,drinking whisky from a bottle.

A whimper attracted my came from a young girl from rehab,she was naked,apart from ripped grey knickers and wet trainers.
Spinks said.

“We're just giving Mary a washdown because she soiled herself.
Get out now Mary and keep your gob shut.”

Mary scampered to the door like a frightened rabbit.

“You look nice Sonia,come and have a drink.”

I took a little sip..


James laughed.
Spinks grabbed my hair behind my neck and poured whisky down my burned like fire!
His hands were now on my breasts..

“Oh no.
Please don't!”

“What's the matter teacher,just a little detention,is all.”

He pushed his tongue deep into my throat...I could bite it off...Go On...DO IT!...No,no I can't.

“Look James,she's wearing no knickers...she's begging for it.”

I'm going to be sick!
Oh NO,not that...Pleaseee.

He bent me over the sink,my face pushed hard against the cold porcelain,he pushed...LORD,I gasped why.
He ruthlessly raped me!
In the reflection I saw my screwed up face,I used to be so pretty...Daddy told me so...not now though...WHERE are YOU Father?
I caught a glimpse of James his yellow teeth shone at me,in a mad laugh...he was masturbating.
Spinks and James seemed to ejaculate at the same time.
I felt liquid seeping down my legs.
He wiped himself on my pretty new dress.

I started to cry.

They both laughed at me.

“Clean yourself up teacher and piss off!”


I feel so unhappy...I could...

Twelve O Clock,It's like being back at school. Vera and I decide to eat with Tim,to cheer him up.

“Hello Tim do you mind if we sit with you?”

No answer,Vera and Baby talk about the plan...Tim doesn't seem to want to get involved;which is quite understandable he doesn't want largactol ,he's zombie enough as it is.
Liver, mash and greens;this food is disgusting,Luke warm globules of gravy,just like school.
I had better eat it all up...
That's it be a good girl Sonia!

Fucking shit!

Did I say that,no ones looking,must have just thought it.
These metal chairs make such an awful noise,scraping on the lino.

“Stop making that fucking noise Sonia.”

“I'm not,Vera,it's not me.”

Tim doesn't seem to know what's going on...on the pills,I bet.

“Eat your dinner Tim,be a good boy like me and Vera.”

Spinks strode into the canteen with James;he looked like a Gastapo officer and his lackie. Vera and I kept our heads down.
Shit they're coming over to our table.

“Hello wackos,eating our slops are we.”

He prodded Tims food with his finger.

“What's the matter chief,not good enough for you,want some rice and corn do you?”

James sniggered and spat on the table next to Tim.
Tim just sat there,deep in tribal thoughts,cheetahs,tall grass and savannah doubt.
Spinks soon got bored of Tim,no response.

“How's your dolly Vera,eating her food is she?”

Vera seemed to shrivel up.
He put his arm around me...

“Hello teacher,keeping it all in order are we?”

His hand slid over my breast,he tweaked my nipple,he hurt,no gentleness.
I saw that everyone was watching,the dinner ladies,even old Tim...why doesn't anyone help me:daddy would!
My nipple grew hard,he whispered...

“I'll see you later Sonia,for some more detention.”

While the attention was on me,James snatched Baby and pushed her face into Tims dinner.
Vera screamed and plunged her fork smack bang into James cheek,missing his eye by a fraction ,his scream joined Vera's,in a barrage of noise.
Blood spurted over the table like ketchup.
Vera rocked Baby better.
Spinks roared...


James shrank to the floor crying.
Spinks made to grab Vera and Baby.
Old Tim must have heard the bell.
The floodlights came on,the crowd roared for the champ.
Tims second, massaged Tims shoulders.
Tim looked marvellous,red satin shorts,white boots.
His muscles shone with sweat.
Tim hadn't looked or felt so good for years
The bell clanged.

I sat locked to the metal chair,full of admiration and love for my hero.

“HIT him champ,hit him.”

He hunted Spinks...
One,two,three jabs,Spink's eye exploded in a spray of dark blood. A right cross,his cheek moved over his face.
A straight left to the mouth,bits of teeth and mucus spattered my meal.
Spinks started to slide down the wall,defenceless.
Tim threw an uppercut,a broken head banged the concrete.
Fight over.

“TIM,I'll love you for ever.”

Dave Berry and some other nurses rushed into the canteen.
James crawled under the table.
Tim just lowered his head...and started to pray.

The next morning I awoke at 8.30,with the most horrendous headache...probably due to the Lardactol,Berry injected me with.
I sleepily looked around the ward,Tims and Vera's beds,both were empty...I started to cry...why is this happening to me.
Dave Berry came in and gently told me to be at Doctor Whitehouses office at Ten O clock,and not to worry;it wasn't my fault...I just hope Daddy will be there so I can explain:I'm not a bad girl.
After cleaning my face and eating some breakfast,I found myself outside the Doctors office,it felt like being at school again...waiting to be caned.
From inside I could hear talking and then a raised voice barked...

“Do you know what you've done Spinks?”

I started to tremble,oh no I felt like running and hiding in the cupboard.

“Do you Spinks.
You have set Tim back years.
I just hope that we can help him!
There's no excuse for your behaviour.
Clear out your locker and leave the hospital immediately.
Think your self lucky,we don't call the police.
Get out,you disgusting little man!”

The door opened;I looked at the floor,the scruffy black shoes walked past...I didn't look up.

“Sonia come in please.
There's a good girl.”

Doctor Ruth informed me that Tim and Vera were staying on ward six for a little while.
They told me I wasn't to blame for the ruckus in the canteen.
They said Spinks wouldn't be working at the hospital and I wasn't to worry;if I needed anything to ask Nurse Berry.

“Yes Doctor,thank you.”

It's been five weeks.
I feel so alone.
No Vera and Baby,no Tim the champ at least James doesn't bother me, he's been very quiet since Spinks has left.
Dave Berry came over...
“Sonia:come to the doctors office please?”

I followed him into the office..Oh no,what have I done..

“Hello Sonia,sit down please.
We have some bad news for you I'm afraid.
Your Father and Mother have been in a car accident:it wasn't anybodies fault,they were...

The scream roared through my head:I felt urine pouring down my forehead hit the floor,it felt like an electric shock.
When I regained conciousness:I was strapped down under a red blanket on ward six.

The next four months were a blur on my mind.
I remember being held and strapped,the electric burning my skull and shooting through my head;down my veins and out of my toes....
The drugs,a purple haze enveloping my whole world.
I can't remember food,drink,going to the toilet or any everyday events.

One summer morning,I heard the most beautiful bird song...a father wooing his baby chick...caressing her mind.
I started to smile:he made me feel so happy.

September the thirteenth:

My release date has arrived.
Doctor Ruth and the social services have found me a flat...I'm a big girl now daddy!
It's small and tidy,over looking a nice garden.
I'm happy now.
I have to see the Doctor twice a week,just for a chat.
Doctor Ruth is nice,But I don't tell her about the dreams...

Spinks and James,every night doing it to me...laughing at me;and worst of all,after they have finished...

Father would stroll in...

“Not like THAT boys'

Sonia,turn over NOW!”

“Yes daddy.”

September the twenty first:

The social worker,found Sonia;slumped in the shower.
Her red dress went well...with her veins.

Her mourning had ended before it had begun.


Dedicated to Sonia,a dear friend,a talented writer...a victim of abuse...a manic depressive.Who wouldn't be,after her life.
A lifetime sufferer.
The said piece Sonia's mourning was written by Kevin Gallivan.It has been registered as such.


  1. Enjoable but very sad.

  2. Thank you:it is/was sad for Sonia. The story is a lead on to my novel:Henrys that is a sad one...Sonias Father.

  3. Very well written Kevin,

    I could really feal Sonia's anguish.
    Now I've got to go and lock up memories that have been awakend.

    Keep writing.

  4. Sorry if I've caused you pain.
    I feel it's important for abuse to be recognised,and reported.
    It might be an idea,not to lock up your have to know;you are not alone.
    Best regards Kevin,and thank you for your comment.

  5. Hi Kevin,

    Are you OK you've not written any thing for a while. And you've not posted on TF. People are missing you.


  6. Award for you over at mine Galli. VliF

  7. Very strong stuff, Kevinbut definitely worth reading.

  8. Thank you Tim.I'm steeling myself for a challange...Childrens homes and the terrors of the night!
    Trouble is:it leaves one so can only be cured by a drink!
    wrestle with a snake.