Above the World

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One morning on my way to school,
I took orange pills from our window
ledge – the one facing Seneca Street

where mother watches me if I run
to fetch something from the big market. . .

I take her pills from the ledge, stuff pills
into the pocket of a freshly starched
pink flowered dress.

Behind grandmother’s bushes near
red beans – I would make mud pies,
but this is where I removed the top.

All those orange pills stared at me, as
if they had eyes – eye like thos who
lived in our neighborhood.

I took one – chewed it – started to
walk, first past Charlie’s Grocery – he
wasn’t in his rocker chewing on a cigar –

I walked down Avenue A toward my
school – noticed one of mother’s friends
beating a rug against the railing of her

porch.  She never looked my way, so I
took another orange pill from a tiny jar,
and chewed it like a baby asprin, glanced

toward the porch, waved to mother’s
friend, while I sneaked the bottle back into
my pocket.  I thought,  I must have taken

enough to live?
“Twinkle – Twinkle little star…”
Humming the same song, and leaning
my head against the push out window

of our Studebaker… “How I wonder what
you are?”

I began to draw stick figures on our car
window – Studebaker’s had push out ones –
I rubbed the window clean – breathing again –

puffing, rubbing it, breathing, rubbing,
drawing, erasing, drawing, erasing –
exhaling, and breathing, drawing, erasing it –

“Up above the world so high….”

I believe it was my first time to fly.

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