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The Good Old Days

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Cracks dig up sides concealed in playground sidewalks,
(P)resided by we kids- borne through shoes five sizes too cheery,
squeaksqueak on toasty sand. Crawled through concrete
cylinders lined with the January zephyr, drapes to be ripped off
by squealing diaperheads tumbling naked down the street,

and a recipe made in the throes of the best times
From soaking nights by a purring fire at my feet
Too scared to tell if it was real- it would roar if we asked, and

sometimes I stepped on it by accident to purge the urge,
even though my tears would leave the bestrewn windows shivering
and the banana eating the stars would laugh with peeled lips

at the tower of blocks- multicolored like dreams, ours.
Blown over at a twinkle and a stubbed toe and a wail into teddy's arm
and the windows need to be toweled off again

Until the fireman and the fairy traipse down jack-o'-lantern lane;
Swans dripping quills down the rippling viridian creek
Transfixed through caramel daze, they shyly smile into doors.

And when the last shards of orange are shoved behind clouds
and the banana appears- they run down the street,
Paper-thin arms weightless, the last pages of a novel

Until

Benign smiles turn misshapen; teeth now
Click-clack on strips like train tracks,
Fall off the flyer running over confusion

Our stained friends began to lurk, turfed off swings by security guards;
the same cygnets driving drunk through scared pumpkins-
Tires stained with the horror of halloween; fruit nourishes the tarmac now

And our streets stained with the horror of growing up.

Snap the swing, see-sawing into rust years later.
it takes a spill on the sidewalk
me onto the mounds of sand under

Us, cracking up.





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