I was sneaking toward M on my knees, slowly. She was busy reading a book with her mom, so she didn’t noticed me until I revealed my presence with a loud howl – pretending that I am a big bad wolf.
When she saw me, she rushed to her mom’s lap, turned toward me and said: “Wolfy not come”.
– “It will”, I replied, moving closer.
I howled again.
“Wolfy not come!”, she said with more intensity in her voice.
– “It will”, I replied again. I was already in her reach.
“No!”, she said and leaned further toward her mom.
– “Owooooooooo”, I replied.
“Small wolfy”, she said
– “Owooo”, I replied in a quiet voice.
She patted my head.
– “Owooo”, I howled in a quiet voice once again.
“Kitty comes”, she said.
“Meow”, I replied.
We opened the balcony door,
To water two buckets with potatoes that grew half a meter high,
Two rows of strawberries,
An avocado (that lost its last leaf a few weeks ago),
And a few plants that I can’t remember what are they called.
M was pouring water into the first bucket.
Keeping a constant eye on the potato plant,
She turned the soil – into a puddle,
And then moved to the strawberries that were peeking from the wooden box.
Not much water was left in her green watering can,
So, most of the fragile plants
What was intended to be,
A heavy water splash.
At the edge of the box,
A small red bud was staring at us.
We held the stem and helped M to pick her first berry on our balcony.
M and the strawberry in the kitchen –
I washed it under cold water,
Removed ‘the green part that shouldn’t be eaten’
And gave the red part back to M –
Who was all that time,
Observing the process,
With the utmost patience.
Then she took the strawberry, smelled it and put it in her mouth.
Was it good, I asked?
She nodded her head while the strawberry was disappearing.
There will be plenty where this one came from.
But none of them will be the first.
The first is gone,
In the moment that will stay,
Safely stored in the memories of our past.
My parents have been walking trough life wounded,
From the scars they've been carrying,
Their whole life.
A new day,
Brought a new scar,
While the old ones never healed.
(The old) scars cut deeper and deeper.
Until one day,
Their souls started to bleed.
And how does one fix a bleeding soul?
When we went out,
The Sun was warm and bright.
It felt like the city was empty.
M was happy to sit in the pram,
Under her seat,
The bags full of goodies rattled.
In the park,
Sitting on camping chairs, splashing with water, playing kubb.
No pole, no dancing, no rain,
But that’s not why we came,
Blanket, pasta; and a fork in M’s hand.
In the sandbox next to us,
Kids walk barefoot; spades and buckets,
And a ball.
Time passes by,
On a swing, a little hill, or a slide,
While loading the bucket with sand or trying to kick the ball.
In the evening – we are home,
The Sun still shines,
On our balcony little red flowers are turning into strawberries.
My parents did everything they knew,
And possibly – the best they could,
To give me a better future.
I live life,
Far better than they lived,
When they where young.
I live in the future,
That just wasn’t possible for them.
I live the future, I’ve created,
In a home, I’ve created,
I live in a home far away from home,
I live in a home that feels like home.
I was lying like having been beaten on that big, overdimensioned armchair,
Brain dead but functional.
You were sitting on that new stylish sofa,
Worn out, but looking sharp and pretty as always.
In front of you, in front of me,
M was sitting on the carpet,
Trying to build a tower of cardboard boxes.
You asked me what we have in common.
After unsuccessfully running the comparisons,
For (what felt like) several minutes,
I said – only the future.
Where to begin?
At home – closing the tap water while brushing the teeth?
At the supermarket – selecting only bulk items from the vegetables section and placing them in a cotton bag?
At the park – picking up a wrinkled plastic envelope that once wrapped a kex chocolate bar, bringing it home and storing in the walk-in closet (together with similar items, that are waiting for the next trip to the recycling yard)?
In the bicycle room – changing to winter tires in January?
At the train station – instead at the airport?
We should begin at the end – at the end where there is nothing left,
And see how to best use the time we have until then.
Everything else is just a habit.
Which shouldn’t be hard to change,
If we would know,
That if we don’t (change it);
We will wake up one day,
And there will be nothing but nothing around us,
And that nothing is gonna come to stay.