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One More Time


Girl


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Girl


One More Time

Just for a MINUTE, Lord, let me be a child again.

I knew those feelings, but they slipped away one day,
when I neglected to remember them.
If I might just once again:

Run as fast as I can for no reason,
but to feel the hard ground under my feet.

Walk home from school kicking a rock and dragging
a stick, amazed by tiny buds on the trees and the
earth's awakening from winter's sleep.

Press my nose against a rain-washed windowpane,
reluctantly allowing the aroma of cookies baking in the
kitchen to pull me from my watch.

Hear the bat smack the ball into left field, feel my
hands sting, the sweater tied around my waist flapping
against my legs as I run.

Catch a brief glance, from atop my father's shoulders,
of four pale-blue robins eggs nestled in the old oak.

Push damp hair from my hot face, cheeks streaked
from dirty hands that have built roads, lakes and
towns in lumpy flower beds.

Stomp through puddles in spring's light rain until my
pants and shoulders are soaked. (Maybe there
(there shouldn't be a punishment where there is no guilt.)

Crouch behind a bush in the darkness during a game of
hide-and-go-seek,
heart pumping loudly, breath tight in my chest.

Wobble down the sidewalk on my new bike,
biting my lips in concentration as I
ride alone for the first time.

Put a small tooth with a pleasantly gory root
under my pillow and snuggle into warm quilts,
fighting sleep for one magic glimpse of the tooth fairy.

Climb onto my father's lap, smelling familiar after-shave
and pacing my own breathing with his steady rhythm
until I fall asleep.

Lift my face, eyes squeezed shut and mouth open wide,
to catch huge snowflakes on my tongue.

Feel the tingling sleeplessness of Christmas Eve,
listening for hooves on the roof and really believing
in Santa Claus, but almost knowing it isn't true.

When did I accept the difference between reality
and make-believe? On what day did I start seeing
with my mind instead of with my heart?

I never planned to let these times escape when I
moved into others. I didn't know they would hurry
from me to become only fragrant reminders
of a scent forgotten.

Please, Lord, let me be a child just one more time.


author: Kathryn Bacus
1999-2002

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With appreciation to Ms. Bacus and as a tribute to
her daughter whom inspired this beautiful poem.
The webmaster dedicates this page.

*Used with permission*

Girl





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