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November 22, 2013 / Sez

#100poems thirteen: Stolen Dreams

“I’d love to be a nurse” I wrote
On our display about
“What we want to be
When we grow up.”
(We hadn’t learnt about ambition yet)

I didn’t know a thing
About being a nurse
I had no passion for smithing fevered brows
Or dressing wounds.

But my mum was a teacher
And hated it. That was out.

And of the sanctioned goals for little girls,
I didn’t know another.

But as I wrote those words
I saw my neighbour, crayoning herself
A uniform, that little mini wimple with a cross sitting on waxy curls.
“I want to be a nurse” she’d pencilled in.

Indignantly I turned over my sheet
Stuck for inspiration heard the clash of cutlery and laughter in the hall
And modified my mission.
The only option that I thought was left.

“I want to be a dinner lady
I wouldn’t shout at people
Who wouldn’t eat their beetroot.
And never send them back to try again
I’d always give you seconds if you asked.”

The wall was full of nurses in the end.
But only I offered unlimited seconds
And no beetroot.


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