Walking around the village pub you take a cigarette from a packet in an old man's hand, light it then stub it out in the glassy eye of the stuffed stag mounted above the bar. You take a coat from a hook and tip a pint of beer into its deep pockets.
Hitching up your skirts you piss long and hard on the dusty floorboards.
No one looks at you.
It was a Thursday morning you realised. Inside the shop narrow and dark as a container lorry, you picked up bread and tins of soup, hugging them close to your breasts.
You crumpled a five pound note on top of the newspapers on the counter. The shopkeeper looked past you. Waiting for minutes before turning and leaving, your heart hammered your chest.
This was your new home.
For the first week you cried, hidden inside. The second week you slipped into houses, uncovering secrets and upending tables. The third you lit fires, daubed graffiti, nailed doors shut. Still no one looked, not even the children.
They will not see you. You are not their child. The child you carry inside you is not my child.
We don’t like strangers here.