A Husband's Lament
My wife’s gone into hospital, just for a week or two,
She’s been giving me instructions on all the things to do,
How to look after the children, everything they should eat,
Where to buy the groceries, the vegetables, the meat.
When to do the washing up and when to change the sheets,
Don’t let the children take over the house but given them occasional treats.
Remember to pay the milkman and take the dog for walkies,
Listen carefully to the children to spot if they’re telling porkies.
“Don’t worry,” I said as I left her in bed, “get over your minor op,”
To be honest I wanted to get away, I knew she’d never stop.
There were going to be no problems, I’d watched her for fifteen years,
She sailed through all the household tasks, very seldom any tears.
It was going to be a piece of cake but little did I think
Wheat I jungle I was entering, the depths to which I’d sink.
I picked the children up from school, Jennifer and Mark,
They weren’t really worried about their mum, the whole thing was a lark.
“Now what do you want for your tea?” I asked - that was my first mistake,
“I want chips and chicken nuggets and chocolate and cake,”
That was Mark, the nine-year old - I thought Jenny would have more sense,
After all, she’s nearly twelve, how could I have been so dense.
“You’re having what your mother said, salad and nice cold meat,”
“Yuk!” said Mark and “Yuk!” said Jenny, “we’re not having that to eat.”
So after the fight was over, I threw what was left in the bin,
“And before you watch any telly, your homework you’ll now begin.”
I thought I’d leave the washing up, there was no need to hurry,
There were plenty of other things on my mind about which I had to worry.
Eventually I got them to bed, much later that I thought,
So I sat down to read, to relax a while, a bit of peace I sought.
I awoke in the dark at half-past three, still sitting in my chair,
I was cold and stiff and rather confused, feeling the worse for wear.
When I did get to bed I overslept - the morning was starting badly,
Getting breakfast was an impossible task, the kids were fighting madly.
After the school run I returned to the house - oh what an awful mess!
The sink was full of dirty dishes, on the floor was Jennifer’s dress.
Mark’s football boots were on the stairs, the newspaper in tatters,
I must get all this tidied up, that’s the only thing that matters.
Their bedrooms were full of dirty clothes, so I put them all in the washer,
It was one of the lastest models, you couldn’t get anything posher.
I shoved in Mark’s red football socks, I didn’t stop to think,
So all the things that had been white were a delicate shade of pink.
Steadily things went from bad to worse, the worst thing was the shopping,
The supermarket was a mystery tour, I wandered without stopping.
“We hate that cereal, it’s not what we have, we want the one with honey,
We’ll go to the Chinese for a take-away if only you’ll give us the money.”
I can’t believe two weeks have gone, Mum should be home tomorrow,
I’d really like to get drunk tonight, to drown out all my sorrow.
When women say how well they cope, there’s no need ever to doubt ‘em,
God bless all wives and mothers, how would we manage without ‘em.