Center St. 2B

10 Dec

the worst
was that day in the fall
right before the cold came
when I took my three-year-old daughter
to play on the deserted playground
and right across the street
there was a gigantic fair or carnival
with clowns and food and loud music
and people laughing and smiling;
but I couldn’t afford to buy any tickets
for the rides,
or even the small fee to get in,
so
every few minutes my girl would stop
on the monkey bars or the bouncing duck
and point to the wild, wonderfully-colored rides
with their lights and music.
she wouldn’t say anything,
she would just point, and sometimes
her little mouth would open just a bit;
then she’d look at me and I’d have to look away,
sitting there on the gravel by the wood beams
smoking an old, dry butt.

that was the worst.

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5 Responses to “Center St. 2B”

  1. slyboots2 10/12/2007 at 3:30 PM #

    Or it could be proof that we get ample chances to re-do and fix the mistakes we keep making, over and over…finally getting it right. At least I really hope that’s the case. I sure as hell don’t want to relive a crapload of things.

    I like the poem, and never would’ve thought to consider it a call to judgment. My reaction was that the child would likely never remember the incident, and the parent would live with the guilt forever. Because that’s how we are wired. And unless you told me, I never would’ve presumed that it was autobiographical. Silly lady. Probably lives in Seattle now.

  2. Dyna Girl 10/12/2007 at 10:04 PM #

    Oh woah. I love this one. Perfectly said…just enough words to evoke very clear emotion.

    About the cigarette…yeah, about making inferences…some people evidently find that a very trying skill.

  3. (S)wine, Inc. 11/12/2007 at 1:13 PM #

    dyna, thanks.
    sly, everything is circular.

  4. I.:.S.:. 14/12/2007 at 6:04 PM #

    I’m going to rob a bank, all the romantic tragedy of poverty is starting to really get to me.

  5. (S)wine, Inc. 14/12/2007 at 6:12 PM #

    ISSY!!! you’re back!

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