Koolaid

Yellow was the colour
of their house, green
the lawn upon which
we played – the house
of boys where fun lived.

Ours was two-storey,
red brick with black,
the colour of our air,
privacy fences blocking
outsiders, girls within

Never heard a voice raised
there, was served only milk
and cookies in the kitchen;
could not understand why
Mom said don’t go inside

but they had mini cars, and
trucks with working parts,
better than our dolls, and I
wished I could be a boy –
less complicated it seemed

And I wished my mother
played tennis with the ladies
and watched from the kitchen
as children played baseball
offered Koolaid in the heat.

Had a friend there, a boy
so kind and gentle, taught me
respect, protected from harm,
let me be me – was it love
I felt, at such a tender age?

We moved away, though,
left that sunshine house
behind, lost touch with
friendship, never again
to connect with neighbours

Everyone has something
to hide, Mom said, implying
ours was the better devil,
drank her Koolaid, too old
now to undo childhood’s lies.

(Image: suburbman.tumblr.com)

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