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I Love the Bones of You, Mum – James Montgomery

But lately they only make you groan. So, I pop them on a delicate cycle, before drying them in the sun.

On the clothesline, the littlest click-clack. The largest lie languid on the lawn. Even skin-puddled, you try to be on good form – but the sight of them makes you cross.

‘They’re beautiful,’ I say.

You tut. Declare the scene a bric-a-brac of fossils, knick-knacks of long-gones.

I ease your bones back in, and it’s like threading tent poles. Like pitching up to camp in Kerry: Quick, before the fecking storm!

Smile stretched tight, you squeeze my hand. ‘Thanks, love.’