Few of us can capture a child’s reticence and awe like Robert Ford has in this poem about a kindergarten encounter. You can find more great poems and learn more about this poet who lives in Scotland on his blog, Weezlehead.
It wasn’t quite my first day there, and while I sat at the safety
of a long wooden table, a mile-wide belt of asteroid children
fizzed about the hall, high on screams and random collisions,
pounding its feet on a sprung floor all glassy with new varnish.
Her long-fingered hands were working the grown-up scissors,
the chafing of the blades against each other making that noise
I still don’t know the word for. You’re very patient, she told me,
freeing me from my cosmic reveries like one of the starfish
she was busily fashioning from a stack of coloured card.
– Robert Ford
First published in Red Eft Review
4 thoughts on “Someone else’s mother speaks to me for the first time”
A brilliant poem, Robert Ford. You can thank Sarah Russell for eagerly sending me to your website for more, just as you can thank her, too. Alarie
Thanks, Alarie. I started following Robert awhile back, and his poetry is wonderful!
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i can so identify with this, being from the grown up side of the kindy table. ii love the words used and unused, like the sound of the scissor blades working together.
I can still recall the terror and the tears of kindergarten. AND even the teacher’s name — Miss Welcher — who was old enough to be my grandma. Those first impressions stick with you forever, I think.