6.30 Sunday night we laminate my special little guy’s accolades, his trophy-trove

(cosy, close). We get in some pre-bed Daddy and Son, heat pump on low

I ask my kid if he’s been good and on his school sticker chart 50 stars glow

He tells me (fully immunised, bright eyes, teeth gleaming with fluoride)

that the bad kid (the one that fidgets and squints, itchy arse, sharp teeth like pins)

has only one star sticker on his chart.

Which kid, son? The half halfcaste / half-trash white?

Purple bruised eyes? That kid baptised

with a name his mum – probably some whore – saw on a tag in Rebel Sport?

Don’t you worry bout him. That lil troublemaker exhausted his teacher, got moved

to a small room where they keep the teacher aides and brooms

Child filed under untameable, wild. Case closed.

I shake my head, pull thermal curtains over my double glazed windows,

I cheer us up by buying a new thousand-thread duvet set for my boy’s bed

with my American Express. I position his pillow so my kid’s head

Can sink into post-Player of the Day safe sleep. My kid says please, shares, takes turns.

I kiss his unstained face, tuck in forearms free of burns.

His belly’s ballooned with nutritious food, anus free of worms.

Somewhere in the hood the bad kid burns his school shirt on a stove

Tryin’a make potatoes on toast while mum’s comatose, baked.

He could shout about his sticker til spit wet her face and she wouldn’t wake.

Speaking of which: Sleep, son. Let’s let CYFs handle it. The kid’ll grow up unafflicted

with all that anxious anorexic safe sensitive pussyarse middleclass shit

Armoured in a hundred layers of skin, tough, acidic as an onion.

I’ll see the kid on Police Ten Seven in no time, chin up

Wanted by some media conference cop,

second sticker stuck under the bad boy’s eye, one teardrop.