Thursday, March 06, 2014

2. Memories in an old photograph

Small among the summer grass safari
chasing butterflies
touched by the warm sun of youth.
Blowing the heads of dandelion clocks,
before we knew it was a sin
punishable by wet beds.
Buttercups snitching on us -
reflecting our passions
when we had to endure margarine.

When streets were meadows
and days were adventures,
when red injuns were the enemy,
not ‘native Americans’,
and the good guys wore white.
Wearing Davy Crocket hats
more like half a dead cat
with a tail that tickled the neck.
Lying in ambush for the enemy -
disguised as a baker or milkman
but me and Biggles knew different.
Lone ranging in the imagination
with Armand and Michaela Dennis
dodging rhinos before bedtime
and the advent of adverts.

Roaming the building site,
smelling of damp mortar,
after the builders had gone home;
collecting discarded nails
for new building schemes.
Walking the plank
on the unguarded scaffolds -
seeing off pirates and their cement mixer cannons
until the shivered timbers splinters
required attention
and the tears a handkerchief
and medicinal kiss.

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