Mind stalled, synapses off kilter
gait pained by age and atrophy,
he swings a chalk bucket
as we walk our weekly walk.
Stopped to watch scurrying ants
he stoops, putting chalk to sidewalk.
Hopscotch numbers beyond his grasp
he draws a simple sun, one cloud.
Standing, he pats my face
grins at me, then bends again.
Clutching pink chalk, draws a string
attached to one pink balloon.
Chalk tossed aside, he lowers himself
shifts bony frame uncomfortably
until he is perfectly placed,
as if holding that pink string.
Eyes tight shut, he lies still
floating in his muddled mind,
beside the cloud and sun.
And I smile wistfully.
I picture him a young boy
spent from playing tag,
drawing this sidewalk scene
lying down just like this . . .
then jumping up to run away,
an entire life in front of him.
Not bumbling to recognize me,
needing a helping hand.
My nephew posted this photo of his son quite some time ago on FB. I loved the photo and asked permission to use it some day on my poetry blog. This little boy is a wonderful bright, lively and imaginative child! I went to a place with this poem that I wasn’t expecting.
Posting for OLN (Open Link Night) at dVerse, the virtual pub for poets, where today that famous guy from Sweden, Bjorn, is still revelling in the summer solstice season and Sweden’s advancement in the World Cup!