Sunday, 5 September 2010

A Transformation.

Pure Fiction is driving this week's poetry bus and the prompt is a wide one - anything to do with Transformation. Sometimes a wide subject makes it harder to think of something to say, doesn't it? Well I had a long think and then I came up with one close to my heart - it has always struck me that the day one's child begins full time school is a real 'transformation' day - for the first time for many children, they are away from home, from the influence of Mum and Dad, on their own in a fairly strange environment - and (for the purpose of this poem) they have a whole secret life about which Mum and Dad know nothing.

What mother has not had the following sort of conversation with an infant son?

Did you have a good day?
What did you do?
What did you have for school dinner?
Were you a good boy?
Sort of.
What did you do at playtime?
Played with my friend.
Oh you've got a friend have you? What's his name?
Can't remember.

I don't remember being struck when I started school with the thought that at last I had a secret life about which my parents knew nothing (I went to school at four and a half having not been to any kind of pre-school - there were no such things in my day). I suppose it is a feeling that the small child can't put into words - but it is there nevertheless. So here is my contribution:-


I was sad
when you went
through the school gate
for the first time.

For I knew
that by the end of that day,
you would have a life
about which I knew
only what you chose
to tell me.

Have a nice Sunday. Here the weather is beginning to break up - sunshine and heavy cloud - September is coming with all its true colours.


Pure Fiction said...

Beautifully simple. You're link is up.

Pure Fiction said...

Your, godnabbit. Your. ahem

Jinksy said...

Every mum will relate to this one, Weaver!

Helen said...

You chose the perfect moment of transformation .... for so many of us. Incredibly true!

Anonymous said...

I remember being warned at a 'pre school' meeting that the children would saying 'nothing' when asked what happened at school, however on the contrary my son would recite in great detail everything that went on. I have found the sentiment to be more true of my kids now they are leaving home and I am not central to their lives any more. But a lovely poignant poem about separation and growing up.
thanks for sharing

Carolina Linthead said...

Powerful...I have friends who have just experienced that moment for themselves. It is also a transformative moment for the child, moving into a world apart. Reminds me of the Crosby, Stills, and Nash song (Teach Your Children)!

Totalfeckineejit said...

I love both sides of the coin here weaver.I like your truth and lack of pretence in all you do.Our son starts 'Big' school properly tomorrow, we made a hard but genuine choice for him. (no exams to dictate here Pat, just choice) and daunted he said the most heart stirring/breaking thing of all 'I trust you' My God!

Mistlethrush said...

How true that poem is. And if a child has 'done nothing' at school the reality is they've had a fab day!

Batteson.Ind said...

lovely poems.. the pair of them and so poignant.. I must admit, I could only feel jubilation when the kid went to school finally :-)

Penny said...

Just love the new header.
Yes the life at school for those going was your own, for those sending them off it was a mystery some times never revealed!

Helsie said...

Love the new headder photo and both of your poems ring true to me.

Heather said...

I left you a comment yesterday Pat, but it seems to have got lost. I love the simplicity of your poem - it is so poignant. The stone bridge in your new header is wonderful and looks part of the landscape, though I shall miss the white geese! I managed to solve your riddle!!

Elizabeth said...

Bobby insisted that the assistant teacher was called Melon.

Long discussion ensued.
No! MELON !!

etc etc
......we were right!

Niamh B said...

Nicely put, simple and true

Reflections said...

It rings of truth in so many transformations.... How often someone has asked how my day was when I was starting a new project, and out of a purely exhausted day... my answer often has been "good", or "tiring". Only later to realize how little that really says.

Peter Goulding said...

Fast forward ten years and you're glad a lot of their lives are kept from you!!
I love the simplicity of this.

Titus said...

Waah! It's me!

Dominic Rivron said...

Interesting. I don't remember there being much worth not telling though! :)

Like the header picture - where was it taken?

The Weaver of Grass said...

Thank you for the kind comments.

Anonymous said...

Oh, yes, Pat: Maisie's first two days at school so eloquently represented here! And then in your coda, my reactions too.

Karen said...

So true, Weaver. I should show this to my daughter who is lamenting losing her little one already.