Baby Brother

 

Timid tears rolled down

Freckled and crimson cheeks,

His tiny fingers clutching mine,

On his first day.

 

Charcoal bicycle tires

Wavered over chalked pavement.

A toothless grin under

A helmet too big.

 

It’s been too long

Since those hands latched mine.

He towers over me now,

A baby face peeking out from stubble.

Still, we relive the days

 

Of stealing our parent’s white

Sheets to construct a secret place,

Just for us to make shadow puppets

And read stories past our bedtime.

 

We reminisce the time

He mastered the diving board

At the pool down the street.

We became prunes,

Wading until sundown,

When the earsplitting whistles

Blew, indicating it was time to

Make the journey home.

 

When I recall these memories,

Ones that have long passed,

My stomach doesn’t clench

With sadness.

 

For I anticipate the day

That my children and his

Will scamper around the yard,

Grass-stains that mirror

My childhood, and once again,

We’ll be those two kids, cavorting

Down the street,

Young and jovial.

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