Written by RitaC on July 29th, 2014

In Praise of Children Who Don’t Listen

When asked why, they say Sometimes I don’t want to listen.
Fair enough you think.
You remember what it’s like
Filling every waffle hole with syrup
Pondering the swirling bath tub drain
Feathertouching a cicada shell, brown, brittle, and cramped
Gazing out of focus, losing what self you have in dreaminess
While people taller and older interrupt your world.

But you say I need you to listen
Because saying it twice or even three times demands
more words for your tired mouth
That squirrel will bite you
No jumping off the couch
We’re not buying anything today
Over and over day after day, alert, you repeat
Because your job is keep little bodies safe.

Yet you long to uphold the right to not listen,
To silence those damnable interruptions for
A glint off a copper dome
A mockingbird’s tumblesong
A green bite of parsley from the earth
Sensations, colors, shapes, sizes, gaining admittance or not.
Now that you’re older you can. But do you?
Or do the conspirators have all your attention?

 

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