Time Travel / by stephenherronold

A certain shy simplicity.
"I'm staying here," she says,
Sitting on the bottom of the slide.
I can't blame her.

The sun is out and the sky is blue.
She's been up and down the slide
Two dozen times.
Now she eagerly pops bubbles
On a borrowed iPhone.

A year ago we were here.
(For her second birthday).
That time, it was the water fountain holding her attention.
The cold water on a hot day
Flowing endlessly over small hands.

Then as now
A dragon's horde of birthday gifts are forgotten by the princess.
Politely opened, elegantly ignored.

Suddenly, swings!
Urged by the birthday girl,
We all risk a go.
Creaking chains,
The happy vertigo of back-and-forth.
Muscle memory pushes legs out,
Then tucks them back, satisfyingly.
It all makes her very happy.
Mother, Daughter, Aunt and Uncle,
The same age, for five minutes.