still fending off nightmares
with plastic swords
and MONSTER-B-GONE lights.
I was rarely gentle with you.
I blistered our hands with blacktop;
I choked our sandals with mulch.
Yet you remained untouched
by life's failures and faults,
only marred on the skin
by two frolic-scars.
There are seven chin stitches
from a monkey bar mishap,
and three on your upper lip
from disgruntled floor tiles.
But that never halted
your gap-toothed grins.
I fought by your side
during alien invasions,
where broccoli trees swayed
beneath the 1% lowfat Milky Way.
We cradled dirt-stained snowmen
that lasted weeks in the freezer,
and attacked Georgia fireflies
with an army of pickle jars.
I cried when we ate mushrooms
(they taste of rubber and disease)
but gorged on knock-knock jokes
(the cheesier, the better).
We scrawled our promises in crayon
because chalk never stayed;
we composed cricket concertos
and moonbeam serenades.
Dear muse... this is farewell,
we have waltzed the years away.
But please keep close to my attic dolls
and patchwork teddy bears
(dust bunnies make dull company).
Perhaps lend me some sunshine,
you have plenty in your pockets.
I'll make you proud, I promise;
I'm due for spring cleaning.
No regrets rotting in the fridge
or spiteful skeletons in the closet....
Or even, heaven forbid, dirty laundry on the floor.