Poetry

Where Are We?

Photo credit: Jin Ho Kim.CC0/Public Domain license
Photo credit: Jin Ho Kim.
CC0/Public Domain license

We took turns
led each other with words, a hand
on elbow or shoulder

Across wide yards, up stone stairs,
down brick passageways, onto nearby
streets, into safe alleys
and stopped — where are you?

We learned to map
without our eyes, see worlds
in our minds, draw
our own compass—arrow
and rose

We were like pigeons
homing

We were so often right

We knew how
to slow time, a special trick
of children

This way we played gave us
our sure sense of north,
(about which we boast), of where roads point,
of coast — before sniffing salty air

A simple game
by outdoor children, meeting
on the street

Children with nothing to do

We took turns,
a special trick of children

Pamela Hobart Carter loves Seattle as much for its water and mountains as for its bustle and creativity. She explores the Emerald City daily while walking her dog. Carter used to be a teacher who wrote on the side. Now she is a writer who teaches on the side.