I know, today’s Tuesday, but I wanted to share this extract I’ve read of a new Karen Carpenter biography by Randy Schmidt. We all know the story and hearing it again doesn’t make it any easier, but this is really well written and a stark reminder that eating disorders aren’t really about eating at all, but control and how you see yourself in the universe.
The hindsight feels so cruel – you want to be there for her, knowing what we know now and make things alright, but life doesn’t work like that. You have to take in the the culmination of bad descions and experiences and lead to the inevitable tragic concequence.
After I read it I went straight to this poem. It’s not just the swears that have meant this poem has endeared for so long…
They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.
But they were fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern
And half at one another’s throats.
Man hands on misery to man.
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
And don’t have any kids yourself.
‘This Be The Verse’ by Philip Larkin