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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

Anne watched the Kid
walk back to the nursing home,
across the lawn
and past the white round tables,
past the swings and slide.

She'd told him,
Kid don't mention my name
when you ask the nuns
about pubic hair, OK?
she had added.

I want it to be as if you
were just interested,
she had said.

Ok, I will, he said,
and was gone across the lawn,
with hands in his pockets,
a determined look
on his young,
11 year old face.

Anne rubbed her leg stump;
it was sore and hurt;
her none existing
toes itched.

She watched until he
had disappeared inside
the nursing home.

After a little while
the Kid walked out
of the French double windows,
crossed the lawn,
past the slide and swings,
and sat on a chair
by the round table,
where Anne sat
in her wheelchair,
her red skirt pulled up,
rubbing the leg stump.

Well, what did
the penguins say?
she said.

The Kid sighed.

Sister Blaise went red
in the face and said,
why are you asking
such a question and why
would I be interested?

What did you say, Kid?
Anne said,
rubbing her stump.

The Kid eyed her stump,
red and fleshy.

I said that Colm
had asked me
and I needed to know,
the Kid said.

Anne scratched
the leg stump.

So what else did
she say?
Anne said.

The Kid looked away
from her leg stump
and into her eyes.

She said it was
the hairs that grow
in certain places
on the body.

That all?
Anne said.

The Kid nodded,
and stared at her leg again
and glimpse of white underwear.

Didn't say which
part of the body?
she said.

He shook his head
and said,
no, just blushing said
it was hair in certain
parts of the body.

So none the wiser?
Anne said.

None the wiser,
the Kid said,
looking at the white table.

Never mind, Kid,
she said,
pulling her red skirt
over her leg stump,
let's go to the beach
and discuss it later.

The Kid got up
and wheeled
the wheelchair away
from the table and chairs
and along the narrow path,
between the avenue of trees
and out the back gate,
and along by the beach,
him pushing the wheelchair.

Anne breathed in the air,
hands in her lap,
and said,
sniff that fecking air, Kid,
this is where I live best,
this is where we came from,
the fecking salty sea.

The Kid pushed the chair
and sniffed the air,
listened to the sea sound
and seagulls,
look over Anne's shoulder
at the one leg bouncing
slightly up and down
as he pushed the chair,
sniffing in the deep
the salty sea air.

Submitted: March 06, 2016

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