The Adult’s Song

So once upon a time
When we bricked rectangles of hay
into our houses, we suffered acne
and the dream of escape,
A stepfather who smothered your smile,
The deadness of hours never ours.

Open your heart.
Open your heart.

The sky says to us,
Look at all that is above you.
It’s all beyond,
Like the past, intolerant of repair.
Put on your boots and clack
Your skeleton’s dance as you did
Diving into the autumn game
Of leaf pile, the smell of decay
Crumbling around our energetic bodies,
The damp odor of acorn and root
Thumbing through our hair
Like a librarian searching
For the definition to a word
Loosened from her scalp in sleep.

We didn’t know we were searching.
We didn’t know our hearts would ever be closed.

One word. One look. And sometimes
I shut down so quickly
The air is stunned into heat,
Molecules expanding into a science
Contradictory to . .  .

Sky saying,
Open your heart.
Open your heart.

An adult is a forever thing, forever
Not new,
Not aware.

Here it is:

In the woods when I was a child,
There lived everything I would ever need:
Tree cover, creek lush, berry ready,
The call of animals I could not name
And the magic of light I could.
Tree cover, creek lush, berry ready.
I was new and I was old
Among the windows of the bracken,
Eating the earth in fistfuls of clover,
Greedy with mud walk and stone heat.

Words in those memories or memories
In those words pelt my keyboard as I whisper,
Open your heart.
Open your heart.

Tree cover, creek lush, berry ready.

Baby, baby, berry ready.

Baby, baby, baby.

–Shaun Perkins

One thought on “The Adult’s Song

  1. This is nice. When I read it the first time I knew it should “season” a bit. You are an incredibly gifted poet. I wish I was able to reciprocate. This poem is beyond nice, beyond my poor ability to describe. It is sweetness, thank you.

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