Joy Gardner, 1993

by Roy McFarlane

“…I couldn’t believe that human beings could be so cruel to another human being,
you know it makes you quinge to hear as a mother of what they did
to my daughter in that sitting room… (they) tape up my daughter.” 
                                  – Public Meeting for Joy Gardner; 21st June 1995

             13ft of tape,
             adhesive sticky tape,
a body belt, chains, handcuffs and tape.
             Bounded her, taped her, tied her up,
                         taped her head like a mummy for the hereafter
and right here, after she ceased to breathe they made a mix-tape
            longer than any tape measure could measure.
Police, judiciary and hospital taped together
                           a tapestry of events and kept a corpse alive
             until they could taper their stories to a rounded tip.
A mother is bounded by the red tape of officialdom
                           until things taper off
                           but a mother lights a taper in the darkness until

                                      my tears will catch them, my tears will catch them.