Poem of the Fortnight: Being Six
Riding a used bike my Dad painted black,
him running alongside
until I sailed off on my own two wheels.
graduating from a used pink Barbie princess bike
to a new purple Monster High model
your new Daddy bought
climbing, hanging by my knees
tumbling on a team
dangling hand-over-hand across monkey rings,
tearing around the playground
walking a quarter of a mile to school,
stopping quietly for thoroughbred horses to pass by
being driven three blocks to school, dropped off
and picked up afterwards, Metallica blasting
making flower-petal perfume,
trying to reach vials on high shelves,
pulling the cupboard down on myself
making soap potions in the bathtub,
mud pies and sand puddings in the yard
my Gran being so far away I rarely saw her
Having five grandmas
and at least four grandpas, mostly nearby
growing up in two little towns
with two parents, a brother and a sister
living in a city of braided, blended, two-mommy,
no daddy, new daddy families
growing up to be an artist.
wanting to be an art teacher.
For Chloe, February 2013
This poem came out of a writing workshop I took with Kiya Heartwood. The exercise was to make up song titles. Since I don’t write songs, I used the title as a prompt for a poem. Thanks to my Writers’ League poetry group for the critique and suggested changes.