The Youngster Still in Me

I’ll tell you a little story

of the youngster I used to be:

I had a well worn notebook

and my favorite climbing tree.

I used to eat fig newtons

and days-expired bread

Green beans from the garden

and other veggies kept me fed.

I had six older siblings

and five younger siblings too

A couple God-fearing parents

from they day they said “I do.”

I had books piled all around me

with adventures to be read

in a bedroom with four sisters

a crib and two bunkbeds.

I used to spin around around

in the side yard to get dizzy

spilling onto fresh-mowed grass

the clouds dancing free above me.

I scrounged around for chump change

in various couch cushions

to Ashley’s Country Corner

for ice cream and confections.

The sky roared above with jet planes

from the adjacent Air Force scene

the clink of golfballs filled the air

from barkies on the nearby green.

Each Sunday off to church with

poofy shoulder pads on dresses

asking for forgiveness

for all of my trespasses.

Wild blueberries in the back field

were our trekking treat

in the never ending summer of

wild hair and tough bare feet.

Barn cat Ginny mewed at us

when her kits were all fresh born

hide-and-seek in dad’s workshop

atop the sawdust floor.

The old tractor was a time machine

the treehouse our getaway

until Mama rang the old steel bell

at suppertime each day.

We said our prayers, hugged real tight,

we ate all our given greens

We learned to love with what we had

and be present by all means.

I am the woman that I am

’cause of the youngster I used to be.

I’m learning how to make some room

for that youngster still in me.

So every now and then I go

back to South Street in my mind

to let the tape play my storyline —

I sit back and again I press rewind.

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