From The Front Lawn Poem by Mike Smith

From The Front Lawn

Rating: 3.8


They're riding the little 'four wheeler'. Both of them. It's made for kids. Battery powered. Pink and white. And holding a momma in a purple tank top and black yoga pants, as well as a daughter in a pink t-shirt and blue sweat pants. It's too warm for sweat pants. But it helps keep the bugs away I suppose. This four wheeler couldn't be rated for more than 40 pounds. It probably holds a hundred and thirty.
They're off now. At least momma is. 'Hurt my legs', she says as she stands up. The daughter still contentedly sits and tries to figure out how the button works so she can drive herself.
Pardon the interruption. The momma asked me if I was going to live on my phone today. Funny because typically she's the one that's always on her phone... Now they sit in the tiny red chair. Again, made for a kid.. But they both sit in it together comfortably.
A little boy dressed in black with a red stripes runs yet another lap around the block. He is maybe ten years old. A little chubby. His headphones can contain who knows what style of music, but apparently it is motivating.
Now approaches the daughter. Curious to see what I'm doing on the deck. She knows she has to go through the mulch to get there. That's probably why she is so curious.... She's not allowed to go in the mulch.. I head her off several times and write on my iPhone even as she tries quite persistently to find mischief. Momma calls her back over to the chair, but to no avail. Too many distractions. The boy is running by yet again.
The apartment neighbors are out back. From my position now I can hear them better than see them. They're quieter now than they typically are after dark. Their noisiness troubles momma.
I got a mosquito bite on my left calf. So long as I don't scratch it it should go away promptly. More mosquitoes are coming out.
The boy runs into his house this time. Leonard, Mommas cat, runs out the door as the two girls head in for bath time. A walking dog and his yellow shirted master seem reason enough for Lenny to run back inside before the door closes.
The mosquitos are in full force now. I've, since the first bite, acquired two more... Time to go inside I suppose.
Or maybe I can smoke them away. So I light it up and keep my eyes glued to my writing. Another neighbor, not the noisy one, says bye to a friend before receading to his upstairs apartment. The running boy is fiddling with some kind of glass or ceramic object. I won't turn around to see what it is... Not until I put the cigar out and walk inside.
The activity seems to be dying off now. The bugs speak to one another. And the running boy, now wrapped up in some sort of glass clanking game, seems to be causing a ruckus of sorts. Money says a parental figure calls to him at the next loud noise he makes...
I really should be going. There's a chair in the kitchen that I can watch momma from and talk with her awhile before she wonders what's taking me so long....
If only she knew the thoughts that keep me distracted.

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