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‘I have sad thoughts every day. I try not to be overcome by them’: Michael Rosen on coping with the death of his son

He is much loved for his daffy humour, but poet Michael Rosen’s new memoir, Getting Better, is an arrestingly honest account of devastating loss. He talks to Alex Moshakis about feeling sad, and why he’s no longer ‘carrying an elephant’

So, this is my little den,” the poet Michael Rosen says, showing me into his north London office. The den brims. Books fill shelves. Boxes pile on other boxes. Knickknacks freckle a desk. “Where would you like to sit?” he goes on. I choose the only seat he isn’t about to occupy himself, something wooden and old and half-covered by a coat. Rosen describes it as a “captain’s armchair” and seems satisfied. “It was my dad’s,” he says. Then a mischievous grin appears, as though he knows what is about to happen. When I sit down, the chair groans under my weight, and I become scared to move in case it gives way. Rosen says, plainly, “It’s a bit creaky.”

Rosen is the author of 140 books of poetry and prose, and is our former Children’s Laureate. He is tall and lanky; when he sits down at his desk it is like watching a long piece of paper fold itself into creases. It’s more than two years since he left hospital after a near-lethal battle with Covid. And though while in hospital nurses shaved his jaw clean, now his beard has returned and so has his good humour, so that he more closely resembles the Rosen people know: scruffy, daffy, softly playful.

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Read the original article at The Guardian

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