Sunday, August 21, 2016

Never Making it to First Base

This is our game of rounders
Our bat, our ball
That’s our house just the other side of
                the wire fence
and that’s our mum
My mum
waving you over to join in

You could say, “No thank you,”
but you don’t
Do you think that because she
                knows your name
it entitles you to a relationship?

She’s my mum – not yours

I cross my fingers  and hope you will
drop the ball
but you don’t
You cup it in your hands as it falls
I wish that, bat in hand, you will miss
Thwack
The ball sails high, thudding into
                the grass beside the slide
Maybe you will trip as you run
Perhaps you won’t reach first base
but you skip the circle -
first, second, third and home

That’s my mum
hugging you
and now I feel a prickle of anxiety
Inadequate
I can’t catch the ball
or hit it when it’s my turn
Only sometimes do I get to first base

I pray to God to
                let the sun set quickly
                so the game can end
and you can go home
and I can go home
with my mum


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