play(ground) so sanitary now
gravel not grass under small feet;
harder walking but softer falls
& no wearing grass to dust
under swings
where nothing grows

children chase each other
in tribes, formed & warring
in minutes in their game
of hunt, chase, & catch,
a game young as children
but old as childhood
played in this world
of squirt guns
& endless hide-and-seeking.

I watch my son
hunt his sister, or does she
hunt him?  unclear
who is it now,
who has otherness inscribed
on skin temporarily
with invisible ink.

About Susan L Daniels

I am a firm believer that politics are personal, that faith is expressed through action, and that life is something that must be loved and lived authentically--or why bother with any of it?
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10 Responses to (play)grounding

  1. Mysterious ending lines! Great thought provoking poem. 🙂

  2. nelle says:

    The hunt and the hunted, interchangeable. This puts a smile on my face. 🙂 I recall my eldest and our puddytat. She would chase him across the home, both on a sprint. Seconds later, they run the other way, cat chasing daughter.

    • That’s my house, right there, described perfectly. Just swap out child for another cat and that’s how they entertain themselves all day, playing endless tag.

  3. nelle says:

    It was quite fun to watch. At night, she’d shut her door because he would make mischief. Welly knew her door latch didn’t always catch, so he’d stretch up and lean against it until it popped open. We’d be in bed and hear the door open, knowing within seconds, he’d be back outside the door with it closed behind him. And then, he’d do it again.

    I had a huge asparagus fern (which she now has) and in colder months, it sat in the dining room on a table, vines hanging to the floor. Welly would sneak under the vines, and unless one looked for him in there, he hid well. He was patient, and waited for a victim. Rye’s then bf now husband walked by, absent any clue. A paw swooped out at him… thought his head would hit the ceiling.

  4. So much fun. Nicely written

  5. Im always remembering my sister Ahnaliz when she made joy out of peeling glue off her fingers and look at her fingerprints on the peel~she squeal out of excitement ! I’d love watching your boy.

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