by Kelly Ann
Boys commanded the preschool playroom:
solid wood blocks,
red, white, and blue stackable legos,
miniature trains with broken wheels,
and Hot Wheel cars.
In the other room, the girls played:
a yellow and white kitchen set,
soft brown and white teddy bears,
dolls with frilly curls and bows,
and Barbies with tangled hair.
Building block towers as tall as I
and constructing Lincoln log forts
was more fun than
cuddling bears, playing house,
and wishing I was a Mommy.
At three, tears burned
down my angry face
when the boys told me
not to play with their toys
because I had cooties.
During recess, while everybody else
made castles in the warm sand,
slid down the red plastic slide,
or teetered up and down,
I did not play or run around.
Hunched low, my heart pounding,
I quickly glanced for stragglers.
Quietly, on my hands and knees,
I crept into the boy’s playroom
and played with the blocks and legos.
(While cleaning the garage, I recently found this poem I wrote in college. It is based on a true experience and is seemingly appropriate for this site. Please share any thoughts that you might have.)