15 December 2012

Don’t sweat the small stuff

Pink bike
Pink bike, pink girl. © 1999-2012 Dries Buytaert 

 . . . and it’s all small stuff inside the fuzzy bag
which she looks in more closely so auntie can 
not see her tears. She asked for a bicycle and 
hoped for a motor scooter, but here is a pink 
knapsack critter, a kitten! she sees her aunt 
smile and puts hers on while breathing O my go- 
favorite (accents on the last three syllables). 
She takes her time extracting each cuteness: 
white gloves with gripper palms, six kinds of 
lip gloss, mmm, strawberry (pause), white 
fleece ear warmers and scarf, pink plastic water 
bottle--She hears her mom How cool is that! 
and her aunt It’s what I would have wanted!
and her brother turning on his new kindle-phone,
excited, on his knees Wait until I show David!
his constant companion. Next, a whistle, pink,
which she blows and the new puppy comes 
flying, sharp collie nose inquisitive, tongue lapping
strawberry lips, and under the kisses, her hands
find the envelope with her aunt’s card of love
with two gift certificates for water ice. Wicked! she
exhales, thinking of the ice station turn-around
she and her boy friend use to measure their runs.
Bored, collie pup chases mama cat who dares
enter the living room, and she finds two more
packages–solid like books or DVDs.  She probes 
as she pulls them out and lays them on the 
fuzz pink kitty. Anyone want something to drink? 
she asks sweetly, rising and kissing her aunt on her 
cheek. Groan mom and aunt answer over brother’s 
Cocoa, making her pause, tableau-like and grinning,
arms full of fuzz, pink papers and ribbon promises.

Posted for Brian's "Poetics ~ Sweat the small stuff" at dVerse Poets Pub, and also for "Poetry Pantry #128" at Poets United.

Copyright © 2012 S.L.Chast
CHosen for my poetry book 11/5/13 



Laurie Kolp said...

Great capture here, Susan. She doesn't like all those girlie things she got for Christmas... so sad. I think there's an art to gift-giving in that it can be one of two things- thoughtful or obligatory. My family growing up was more of the not really caring what I wanted but let's just get something type... and funny, I never felt worthy of any gifts.

Brian Miller said...

interesting...all the detail give this almost a surreal feel...i feel very much in the moment...i wonder at how she really feels...wanting the bike...does the puppy and cat backpack full of goodies make up for it? can very easily see the scene...nice closing shot as well of her standing there grinning...

Mary said...

As far as gifts go, it seems like it all goes to prove that there are 'different strokes for different folks.' You created a vivid scene here.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

You took me right there. So realistic, as is the way of gifts, often being what the giver thinks is nice more than the receiver might prefer. (I am thinking of my three grandsons right now, wondering if we will be returning three gifts on boxing day!) All of the details painted the scene so wonderfully.

John (@bookdreamer) said...

Every christmas my wife puts a lot of effort into getting the 'right' present for the extended family. They do do not! So we get back the same variations of bottled beer or scented soap packs each year. Lack of imagination rather then love . I enjoy watching the lengths she has to go to look pleased!

Grace said...

Great job on the details Susan, I was right with her opening up her gifts ~ Some girls don't like these pinky cute stuff and dolls, like my daughter. She found boy's toys more exciting ~

Sabio Lantz said...

Did she get the bike -- sounds like she didn't. Fun montage of images at a common Christmas setting.

Anonymous said...

wonderful, Susan. the "struggle" displayed here to not let the disappointment show... i felt so captured in the moment. very well done.

Jinksy said...

she sees her aunt
smile and puts hers on

A poignant observation of youthful disappointment... I remember a small me wanting soft, pink leather ballet shoes, but I received pink satin, hard block-toed ones. So near and yet so far! :)

kaykuala said...

A tinge of sadness and a little disappointment. One can't possibly get one's desires fulfilled. Perhaps some but not quite! Nicely Susan!