The Walk to School

Every fall I knew that the season would

dictate my mood. My birthday around the corner,

my new teacher. New pens, paper, glue, Hilroys

in green, pink, yellow and baby blue.

All these letters getting me excited to learn

about anything but numbers. I must have

been such a good student except for high

school where I went crazy in grassy fields

and electric blue doors

and boys

boys

boys

that broke my heart.

 

This is the walk I can never forget.

 

My Papou blocking the wind

as he told me to stay close

behind.

Eight year old me and first day of school

in the suburbs. Montreal alleyways

of hide and seek felt so far away

now. No apartment buildings

here but long winding roads.

I did not have to run across

the street when the bell

rang at the corner of Sinclair

and Birnam.

He kept the air fresh with

his presence

my heart warm with his walk

I followed his steps

tiny me

and giant him.

Telling me in Greek

to be a good girl

and one day

I would be a thaskala

 

how right he was.

 

He walked me every day

and these are the moments

I remember

the safety

of being blocked

by the cold winter wind.

 

I guess that is the reason

I do more for people

than I should.

I show them my love

in all the wrong ways,

all the ways

that were taught to me.

 

It would have been nice

to have known

what my father would have done

if only

he walked me once.

 

 

 

 

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