by Ute Carson
Mother's Milk Books Writing Prize, Fall 2016

Breathless he runs toward his teammates
who call out, "C'mon, let's play!"
He passes his grandmother
who sits expectantly on a bench
and reaches out from habit
to touch his sleeve.
"Not now," he scolds.

He sees the hurt on that beloved face.
For a split second, stories, songs and games
embedded in his memories of childhood
make him feel that he should go back,
say something to her,
though he is not sure what.
Instead he rushes on to where he wants to be now.

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