I smooth stained green across my folding table.
A grass stain? Really?
On the hem of this pink, gauzy dress?
I sigh, and dutifully spray, scrub, and soak, shaking my head.
Hands scrubbed pots in soapy sink, eyes stared, unseeing, through streaky glass.
I whispered prayers, made lists, hummed softly.
And then I saw.
Long, brown arms raised, forming a steeple between them.
Their faces turned away from me, but backs of heads beckoned, Come!
She entered my line of vision;
a vision herself in soft braids, twirly, gauzy pink.
Bare feet, toes painted pink.
Fingertips pink, but not painted so.
Her eyes danced as she took her place.
Backs of heads continued to beckon;
London Bridge fell down,
over and over and over again.
I laughed from my post;
silently cheering on the runner.
She was captured, she was locked up, she was let go.
Captured, locked up, and let go again.
Down to the earth, knees deep in the grass,
up again with a smile to rival the morning sun.
Laughter danced through screened window,
soapy water growing cold as hands lay idle.
And - ah, I remember! -
as the sun began to set, three golden-haired children clasped hands.
In a three-deep row, they walked towards home;
she smiled up at first one brother,
then the other.
And her knees were green.
I smooth stained joy across my folding table.