He was as quick as a rabbit’s shadow
but we kicked the shit out of him
every couple of days.
He had the unfortunate name
of Harry Boner, a perpetual grin,
a quick tongue, and
a little sister as unlucky as Lois,
born with no fingernails, and a head
we said was shaped just like Tweedybird’s,
topped with only a few strands
of thin carrot-red hair, so
Harry was dealt bloody noses and swirlies
while Lois was trampled with words
and the constant sight
of kids howling, running away.
We were hard hearts on the playground,
but just average kids, and yesterday
I heard my son Brian talking
about Ginger, her thick
as Coke bottle glasses,
her crooked, green teeth.
He said if she touched him,
he’d die.