Sweet Pea Preschool
of the Arts

Only a handful of hours, & you
slow, stalled at breakfast.
Where are your shoes, your coat?
I want you to go.
Sewn to me,

your smile
ravels when I let the teacher
have you. For a moment I'm stuck,
then weirdly light.

What are you, spider?
You appear
in a hat with eight legs,
carrying a note: Today I was good at art.
My mood today was happy.
You use glitter

to describe everything, bring us
fevers, croup,
decoupage. Trees
in your "Winter Collage
No. 2" march off the skyline.
Our days fill

with laundry, snot,
shower steam. Barking. I remove
the glue, take you back

& back again. Good at
circle time, yoga, French -
You learn to say excuse me,
raise your hand, wear

a paper crown. I'm not a traitor.
I want you there
& here. Come home now

come home
in a red feathered mask
the New Year.
Don't want to go. But I made you.

Erin Malone

Erin Malone (
wongmalone@msn.com) would like to thank her sixth grade teacher, Mrs. Sallie Allen, for allowing her to stay inside scribbling plays and poems during recess instead of participating in shy kid's nightmare, dodgeball.