Offensive

4 Feb

I read a small book at a playground
while my kid runs, pushes, guides, instructs others
on how to swing, spin, jump, go ’round.
The book is small, penned by an independent writer
who was nice enough to send me several copies of it for some reason.
It has a cover which seems to have insulted a mother, eyeing me from nearby.
She walks across the rubber surface of the playground resolutely, revolted;
her shoes squeaking comically louder as she presses with more gravity,
more import.
“You can’t read that here,” she says. “This is a playground. Kids play here.”
“Oh, I know,” I say. “Mine is showing yours how to use her own momentum and swing.”
She looks at the cover of my book. At her kid. At the cover.
“It’s offensive. God knows what’s in there…I shudder to think.”
I say: “God has nothing to do with it. It’s literature.”
“It’s offensive!”
“The only thing offensive about it is how badly written it is.”
“You should put it away,” she says. “Kids play here.”
I say: “you know the old cliche about books and covers…”
She huffs and puffs, she spins deftly on her left toes like a broken, dissatisfied ballerina;
she snags her daughter off the swing and steers her toward a picnic table
on which a colossal bag from McDonald’s is quickly, savagely, violated
by their hungry hands.
And then she feeds her kid anemic, grey burger patties mixed with cow shit,
washed in chlorine.
My kid looks at me across the playground, still standing by the empty swing.
She shrugs.
I shrug back.
And go to the next chapter of my offensive book.

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One Response to “Offensive”

  1. valerie 04/02/2012 at 7:15 PM #

    heathens, the lot.

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