Thursday, April 17, 2014

Baby brother

It was one of those things
your mother tells you,
about you as a child.
You walked a mile in
your new, squeaky shoes.
You stuck a glass marble
right up your nose.
You put on my make-up
and danced all day.
You said, if you had
a baby brother,
you'd want to kill him.
I couldn't imagine
sharing my tiny world
with you then.
My mother's lap,
my grandma's story,
my grandpa's toffee stock.
My, mine, only mine.
But now I wish
we'd shared a womb,
a childhood, a swing set,
a dog, a room, a bicycle,
half a sweet, a summer
a sorrow, a growing up.
I don't know how we
would've turned out.
I don't know if we
would've grown up
to become strangers,
obligated by their history,
to be nice to each other.
Or whether I would've
held your children
as if they were my own
and bought them gifts,
wrapped carefully, lovingly
in coloured paper.
I don't know if the fights
of our childhood
would've turned into silences.
Or whether we would've
simply remained children.
Saying it all without a word.
I don't know how it would've
been with you, baby brother.
But yet, somehow, I feel
it would've been better
than it is without.