Sheena Blackhall

Gold Star - 6,611 Points (18/8/1947 / Aberdeen)

School Journey - Poem by Sheena Blackhall

I’m a mouse, a mouse
Nervously leaving the cavernous hall of the house

Five steps down from the door
School bag straps half-mast
Blazer sleeves touching my knuckles
I am all buttons and buckles.

A cobbled road to cross and then the church –
Episcopalian – they’re pagans, like the Pope, my mother says.

I mustn’t drag my feet
I mustn’t tell a lie
I must do well
I mustn’t speak to strangers
I mustn’t walk on the cracks
Or I’ll go straight to Hell.

Coming back
I balance on wall-tops,
I am Blondin on the Niagara
Walking the wire.

I go leaping down the hill
Higher and higher
Lighter and lighter
I’m a bird, a bird
I’m Daedalus, Hermes, a swan
I fold my wings when I reach the top of my street
Flying’s my secret. It wouldn’t do to tell
I must put my earth-self on.

Five steps up into the cavernous hallway of the house
Now I’m a mouse, I'm a mouse.

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Poem Submitted: Sunday, February 14, 2010

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