Playing with Rachel in Summer 1993

We helped to clear out the bamboo shoots
which shot up from the blackberry bushes.
The garden was love; these are my roots,
hunting teepee poles in the brushes.

They shot up from the blackberry bushes:
tiny stalks jabbed sister heels on the lawn,
hunting teepee poles in the brushes
until the last sunspecks were gone.

Tiny stalks stabbed sister heels on the lawn
so we’d kick them down like, “Take that!”
until the last sunspecks were gone
and the lawn would lay safe and flat.

We’d kick rogue shoots down like, “Take that!”
though ill-will was always short-lived,
for the lawn would be rakes, safe, and flat.
We gardened and were helpful kids.

Though ill-will was always short-lived,
Rachel and I caught poor snails in a jar.
We gardened and were helpful kids,
and we tried not to stray very far.

Once I caught eighteen bees in one jar–
the excitement! The bouncing off of glass walls!
But we would never stray very far
on those walks to the park, almost Fall.

The excitement! The building of bamboo shoot walls,
imagining wide open spaces,
and the walks in the rain, the beginning of Fall,
gutters flooding for milk carton boat races.

Imagining wide open spaces,
How far are the heavens? Where is the sea?
Gutters flooding for milk carton boat races,
and I’d watch from the apricot tree.

How far are the heavens? Where is the sea?
Mama? When will our new sister come?
And I’d wait, perched in the apricot tree
until the last sunspecks were gone.

Hey Mama? When will Hannah come?
Papa, fresh water? Please tell us a story?
All the last sunspecks are finally gone.
Goodnight four o’clocks, morning glories.

Papa, fresh water? Will you tell us a story?
A new bamboo teepee went up today.
Goodnight, four-o’clocks. Sleep well, morning glories.
Thanks, Mama, my feet feel okay.

A new bamboo teepee went up today–
our little sister is almost here!
Mama, do your feet feel okay?
We’ve all been waiting all year.

Our little sister is almost here!
The garden was love.  These are my roots.
We’ve all been waiting all year.
Yes, we’ll help to clear the bamboo shoots.

This entry was posted in Poetry & Prose, Random Musings. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *