She’s at the age of scrapes and bruises;
edges seem to find her face.
The floor beneath her feet refuses
not to wobble out of place.
She’s at the age of tears to laughter,
chortling through her blood and drool,
careening onward moments after
diving off a three-foot stool.
She’s at the age of near disaster,
toddling on the precipice.
Unnumbered tragedies whiz past her,
every one a narrow miss.
Just a couple of boys on the swings
talking seven-year-old things:
what part of Zelda they’re on,
stuff they both like to do outside,
good places to hide,
what schools they were at
when the virus arrived. Things like that,
like this chat
doesn’t come as the first of its kind in a year,
like hand-me-down fear
can be shed like an oversized coat —
like if launched from the swings, they’d float.
Coleman Glenn is a chaplain and assistant professor of religion at Bryn Athyn College in Bryn Athyn, PA where he lives with his wife and their four kids (plus four chickens and a dog). His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Light, Autumn Sky Poetry Daily, THINK, and Trinity House Review.
Thanks for these. I particularly liked “Precarious.” What parent can’t relate to that? Thank God they were all misses!