Bobby socks

Standing at the open closet door

Looking up at you,

Jeans rolled up in wide folds


Bobby socks and sneakers.

penny loafers.

You say something,

I don't remember your words much


Buttoning the white shirt of dads

Long and hanging Almost to

Your knees

It was spring maybe 1950


The roof

We played on the stairs

Slid down the banisters

Snuck up onto the roof

The adults were afraid of the roof

I loved it up there

Walking slowly on slatted wood planks

That led from one staircase

To the next

No walls

Separating building

T.V. antennas

Strange gnome size doorways

To turreted castle like rooms

Pigeons flapping

The Empire State Building off in the distance

Summer sounds from Ebbits Field.

If you forgot and jumped for joy

A voice

Breaking the spell

Yelling in a screechy

Your making cracks in my ceiling

I'll tell your mother!

first dance class

ugly cotton bathing suit

gold slippers

skinny me feeling fat

first dance class ever


making myself small


I had to move across that huge room

In turn with the others

Dressed in

Leotards and black or pink

Ballet slippers

You were watching from the benches

I hated every moment

She set it up just right


I would be so awkward

Dressed like such a clown


No ballet classes for this daughter

You full of self assurance


How could I

Have grown as old as our mother

My hand as yours

You have only been gone

Ten years or so

I am catching up too fast

Your other daughter

Is left without some to blame


I still wanting my sister




There was a time I feared you

Face reddened with anger

Full lips turned tight

Blue eyes glaring

Cold and hot at once

Pinch and poke

Words like razors

I ran once and hid

Under the staircase

Cold tile floor

Banging of your feet

Above my head

Watching your shadow

Hearing your breath

You turned back

When almost seeing me

I never understood your anger

Yet I have it too

I kick a chair or slam a door


See you