I can’t help but like these girls in tests who
take off their bangles to rest them in view
on the desks next to their spare pens and such.
It speaks of a real command and so much
more than plastic hoops round a wrist could say.
Delicacy beyond youthful display,
subtlety beyond the bright coloured gloss
of making a noise and not giving a toss.
The silent glide of their pens and the fall
of newly washed hair, well-cut, say it all.
Hands, ropeful of the future they’re gripping.
They’ve hearts set on medicine or taking law.
These clear-skinned hopefuls smiling and slipping
bangles back on as they head for the door.
I love to see the board-boys take a jump,
clattering bricks and paving with their wheels,
launching themselves from bland city features,
creatures of speed, air and down with a bump.
I love their baggy jeans, waisted at the hips
and crumpled at the heels, their hoodies and hair,
the efforts taken showing they don’t care
about fashion, their passion’s spent on flips
and tricks with names the rest of us don’t know.
Their have-a-go daring and do again
when they fall, fail and roll or pull a leg
must be admired and provides a free show.
I like those others too, watching from the wings
with broken wrists strapped up in neat, white slings.