One of my earliest memories is falling down the stairs.

I was convinced it was some ghostly wanker.

Later on, that memory told me it was me,

a shadowy doppelgänger.

Another vivid memory was of my Nan.

After she’d had a stroke, great damage it did incur.

She was barely the woman I’d known.

She was in there, but her body betrayed her.

A few days later,

I fell down the stairs, my head took a blow.

I was convinced that I’d blacked out.

Maybe it was, again, the twin shadow.

I remember swimming on the east coast,

Cromer or Hunstanton.

I remember getting caught up in a wave.

The shadow told me to give in.

As I let the water take me, I saw hands.

My grandfather pulled me from the water.

He’d saved me from drowning.

The shadow swore he’d get me later.

When I split my head open,

he’d laugh at my pain.

When my friend closed a fire door,

he forced my thumb into the frame.

When I put a two pence piece in my mouth,

he told me to swallow it.

When I saw a cousin’s Christmas present,

he made my hands open it.

When I was 13 the entire school called me Hitler

cos I had bumfluff facial hair.

I finally gave into him.

He was going to get his way and I didn’t care.

Thankfully I failed,

but I had let him fully in.

He’s been whispering in my ear,

he’s stalked me ever since.

I was an only child

and he was my secret friend.

But, he was always a part of me

and will be till the end.

The brother I never had,

the false memory.

Didn’t find out til my teens,

It was a lie my dad thought was funny.

He never knew the damage it did,

he thought that I was smart.

But I was so desperate for someone else,

I let a shadow in my heart.

I can’t blame him for the way the shadow

took form in my mind.

My imagination ran away from me

and began to become unkind.

It reflected the way I was treated

by my peers and so called friends.

He never would have expected

Shadow Peter would crave my end.

But now I regard him differently,

I’m much more self aware.

And while I don’t take his advice most of the time

about him I honestly do care.

I try to treat him as the broken, fragile thing he his

and let him talk to me, but not let him take the piss.

Because, he is just the shadow in this third dimension

and I’m the solid body, and I get to choose direction.

So, Peter, I know you’re listening, you fratricidal little cunt.

I love you, you fucking maniac, despite all your shitty stunts.

And I always will until the end of days.

and I thank you for being there with me, even if you are a massive pain.


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