Never forget. Life has this way of bashing our childhood innocence out of us with a sledgehammer and power saw leaving us fucked up, old, boring and without spirit. For some people this is the path they long for and good on them if this is case. It’s not for me. I’ve been there, trapped inside a mind that isn’t allowed out to play, trapped inside a reality that refuses to allow any kind of fantasy. I can’t remove these iron bars I still lack that key, but until then my spirit will slip between the bars and spread its wings among the clouds.
This morning coming back from the school run I saw the same Mum I see every day half dragging a mini gang of young kids in their uniforms up the road, she’s tired it hangs heavy in her eyes, this morning I saw her smile for the first time since the beginning of this school year.
Let me set the scene, i’m walking slowly down the road, dawdling cos my muscles are all pretty broken today, i’m thinking about how the yellow and red tulip looks like a flame when I hear the kid shout out…
Boy: Superman! Hi Superman! (He’s looking directly at me and suddenly I realise he is speaking to me….my Superman T-shirt to be more specific).
Me: Hi…..(I’m Superman I can’t ignore him!)
Boy: Super……(he’s not sure what to call me, he can see i’m female, but can’t find the female version of Superman, so he sticks with it) man, Superman, can I ask a question? (He’s past me now and is walking backwards, his Mum is still dragging him up the road….I say dragging in a nice way)
I stop and turn to face him, his face is a picture, he’s grinning ear to ear.
Boy: Can you teach me to fly?
Me: Not today, my cloak is in the wash.
Boy: Can you teach me another day?
Me: So long as my cloak is clean and I have it with me I can….
And that’s when I see her smiling, he has his Mothers smile, she’s now half dragging and half giggling. She still looks tired but far less stressed. His three sisters and brother are all smiling too. They’re happy.
Boy: Yes!! Bye Superman!
Me: Bye kiddo, have a super day at school kids!
I hear him screaming ‘Bye Superman’. until they pass around the corner at the end of the road. In that instant I am reminded of the days when Super heroes meant everything to me, in a world where I could not trust anyone, I could at the very least believe in the hope that Super heroes offer. It reminded me of the innocence of childhood, an innocence that for some is escapism and for others, simply a world they wish to believe in, either way his innocence is beautiful and my soul is blessed, if only for a moment to have seen such beauty.
Karen Hayward ©2016