I talk gibberish, waiting for the metallic red
shadow to turn in the crook
of the road. Ruddy cheeks and
long strides towards the door.
An outstretched hand from prior
decades clasped around my own.
Boyish intrigue replaced
with a firm grip.
Insular and small I would be placed on a knee
and bob up and down and up and down.
Smiles knocked off with glasses and chubby
fingers smudging against lenses.
I contort my hands into those of a magician.
Copying the gentle fist bump when your thumb is replaced with
fresh air. Again, again. Where does the thumb go?
You’ve got my nose. Taken to the car I imagine.
I scamper towards and anxiety is replaced with
A mint humbug. I put it in my mouth,
feel the sickly sweetness burst
into butter and sticky lips.
I hold out my hand for more
and receive a red lolly. Stick bent
and candy sweetness leaking under
I wave good bye. Limp hand
animated under duress. And there
it is. Another year.