30 April 2013

Cherry Bomb (rev)



I said goodbye and went to bed to die; I never
knew that they had lied – was quite surprised
they didn’t seem to care; I agonised, refused to
cry, although in time some tears were quietly shed.

When I awoke and found my sight, listened to
the sound of night’s retreat, got to my feet and
went to greet the day my Mother calmly said,
Oh – then you didn’t die!

When sleep had kindly calmed my quaking heart
and evening’s panic fled, I slept a deeply peaceful
sleep, mindless of my peers deceit, guileless in my
tiny bed; then I remembered why she asked.

I didn’t die! Hadn’t had to say goodbye or suffer from
my sister’s lies, never met with my demise; indeed
alive and well, my lungs were whole, I breathed
with ease throughout the night, the rubber which

would blight my breath, kill the tissues dead when
lodged within a fatal spot had not. So what had
caused my fear? The night before we’d had some
fun with old balloons, you stretched a piece across

your mouth, sucked until a cherry bomb emerged
within your tongue, twisted off to seal the bulb
compressed, popped them with your teeth, or
pinched between the fingers ‘til they burst, or tritely

offered each in sacrifice. Suffice to say a bomb went
off just as I breathed. Sister said with grave concern
(though now I know in jest). It’s not a joke, if rubber
meets your lungs inside you’ll die. Na├»vely

I believed, trusted to a fault my sweetest sibling’s
word and thus prepared to die. I thought about her
claimed effects in retrospect, my knowledge of
anatomy was rather bare although there seemed

anomalies. I connected these, sadly noting that I
had indeed been well and truly had.
© I.D. Carswell