WHEN I WAS A CHILD

This room I write about was so many years ago, and the circumstances of reading
so different to today, it almost seems like a story out of an old book.  Yet I remember
it so well and I only have to close my eyes and I can see not only the room but the
people in it, the furniture – the big oak dresser behind the chair I sat on, the glass
swans on the dresser, the table I leant my arms on so that I could lean over my book
and the feel of the crimson tablecloth under my elbows.

                                  WHEN I WAS A CHILD 

When I was a child,
I read by candlelight,
The gold-bloomed flame
Sending the shadow of my hair
Across the page. 

Opening those books with clean hands,
I found the patient words waiting for me.
Little black words, friendly
As spinning tops and skipping ropes,
Ready to be taken up
Into my heart and mind. 

Nothing ever seemed to change
In that fire-lit kitchen,
Until, somehow, in the blink of an eye,
Everything changed. 

Yet it was in that crowded, candled room
Of fire and flame,
I read of a love that never dies
But  flowers and blossoms
Over and over again. 

Now I remember still,
There is this one thing then,
That always and forever
Stays the same. 

                                          © Gwen Grant

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