Thursday, July 19, 2012

season for a game of croquet

After all the Cub Scouts left happy with their homemade pizzas,
After Sam went off to his own scout activity,
After Eliza gathered with her church young women's group
and off again later to play night games with the neighborhood pals,
After Dad got to work on the sprinklers,
(our sorry lawn.)
looked like it was just me and him left.
Thursday's are like that.

He asked if I'd go out and play a game of croquet with him.
How could I say no to that sweet, inquiring freckled face of his?
We play games.
It's what we do.
So I chose red and he was blue.
He gives me pointers all throughout.
(You got to hold it with both hands, Mom.)
So I strike hard with that mallet,
and go too far,
and all the while these forgotten memories start to trickle back of my own childhood summer's past.
Long ago days playing croquet at Momo's house
where we'd set up the most challenging course
on that sloping backyard hillside of hers.
Us and the cousins.
Seems like yesterday.

And then he laughs
and I'm back with him,
here, again.
And he's in the lead
with these spread out wickets he's placed.
Naturally, and no surprise,
his blue ball reaches the end post before my own.
So we gather everything up
and he smiles big 
and speaks the words from my own heart,
That was fun, Mom.
And I sigh and remember that
it's out of simple things,
that happy childhoods
are made.

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