Gum Balls

gum ball Gum Balls  The Fruit of the Sweet gum Tree.  Also known as “space bug”, “monkey ball”, “bommyknocker,” and “sticker ball”. It is a hard, dry, compound fruit 2.5-4 cm in diameter and composed of numerous (20-50) capsules. Each capsule has a pair of terminal spikes, and contains one to two small seeds.

I nap on a brown army blanket under the sweet gum tree and I am content.

I breathe in the smoke from Daddy’s Chesterfield cigarette and his Old Spice Cologne

I ignore the gum balls under the blanket.

I count the flowers in the linoleum on the kitchen floor.

I memorize my phone number and the pictures in my Little Golden Library Book.

I like the flowers best – the yellow ones that look like butter.

The flowers on the linoleum are red.

The television is always on as

The World Turns

If I open the cupboard under the sink will I still find your whiskey bottle there?

Does your ironing board still crowd the dining room where no one eats together?

Do you still have the ashtray I brought you from Luray Caverns?

Do you still catch your toe under our worn carpet and cuss at the dog?

Have you shot him yet?

Do you still write me every day in your mind?

Can I come home again?

Where rabbits hutch in Aunt Irma’s backyard.

Where Bill Mackey’s motor scooter dives down a hill that seemed steeper then.

Where you are still young and you tie a perfect bow in my sash and send me off starched and ironed to conquer the first grade.

Where the houses on both sides are filled with people who love me.

Where you stand on the front porch and holler “It’s Howdy Doody Time” and I run home to you.

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