Next thing

You’re a little girl
inside a fuzzy poncho
feeling snug and aware
of dust motes and how quiet it is
when you’re waiting for the day to end.

Then you’re in a car at lunchtime
with the sun shining on your face
and you see the lines, the age,
the disappointments; you’re suddenly old,
struggling to hold onto anything hopeful.

There are people to save
but you can’t do a damn thing.
There are places to go
but you’re stuck in time.
There are people to love
but you’re invisible.

Stepping into the day,
painstakingly taking note of beauty
despite a pebble in your shoe,
relearning how small you are
when everyone tunes out your voice.

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