by Jim Farfaglia
The school bus is minutes away.
Our kindergarten party awaits.
My Freddy the Freeloader costume
is in a brown paper sack,
but lacking one thing:
his floppy, torn top hat –
and I cry at my incompleteness.
So you get right to work
with construction paper, cardboard
and your easy way with creativity.
As the bus pulls into view
you place on my head the finishing touch…
Parading down the sidewalk
that winds around Phillips St. School
I see the neighbors lining the streets,
handing out compliments
as sweet as penny candy.
I hold my upside-down newspaper,
pretending to read, and trip on a crack.
Just like Freddy the Freeloader!
someone offers and –
as I adjust my floppy hat –
for the second time today
I smile through my tears.