Poem: My Kid

My inner kid needs play time and this poem is all about that.

My Kid

The alarm went off at eight
    as it is set to do,
    an easier chore for alarms
    than for those who rise to them
And I rolled over,
    unwilling to let go of the pillow,
    not because of being up too late
    or some other reasonable excuse,
    but for reasons I had to reach for
Scratching through what is me,
    as well as what used to be me
    and what once was me,
    that came to lay itself in my bed
    and use my name
A long way to go
    and I wasn’t but halfway there
These debates with the me that is
    and the me that used to be
    are sometimes and mostly one-sided
Too much good guy over bad guy
    hard guy against easy guy
    and I hear my father’s voice
What’re you gonna do
    sleep your damn fool life away?
    and he’s right, but the kid inside
doesn’t want to work today

My kid has been trying to tell me for a month
    that he doesn’t want to write,
    but I’ve not listened to my younger self,
    as my father taught me not to
My kid wants to go outside and play,
    walking the dog on long rambling tours
    of parks and ponds we haven’t seen
Impatient with abbreviated runs,
    Generally shop-lifted from my day
What’s the point of a dog, if not for loving
    and helping to search out secrets
My kid needs to cut and paste
    and build some imagery
    of motorcycles, vintage cars
    bi-planes, tree-houses, big boats,
    Roman walls and naked women
To fill his kid-mind with exhibitions,
    wandering streets that for too long
    were just the route to somewhere
My kid hears voices
    calling him to play
    and the turning in my bed
    is an answer, if I hear it
There’s work to be done,
    but not until my kid is breathless,
    ruddy-cheeked and ready
Poetry Collection: The Smell of Tweed and Tobacco
This poem is included in
Jim Freeman's
poetry collection


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