Content warning: References Manchester bombing.
I was shocked when someone bought her that album.
It’s a Christmas present, my step-daughter told me.
But she’s only eight, I gasped to my husband.
She doesn’t know what the lyrics mean, he said,
but he agreed they were a bit risqué.
A couple of months ago she stopped singing those songs.
Had her mother confiscated the CD? Secretly, Ariane Grande was my guilty pleasure,
and I felt ashamed I’d reacted so terribly to my step-daughter’s admiration of her.
It’s not for me to decide her music tastes.
Being a lover of words I should have embraced the meanings, not criticised them.
This week something horrific happened in our country.
Could she have been there?
Would she have been that eight-year-old having the night of her life before it was taken away so cruelly?
The next time she stays with us, I will hold her that little bit more tightly,
and I will let her sing her precious heart out to any song she wants to.