“Learning History in Nursery School” by Patrick Carrington

Patrick Carrington


For a month, rain slid down on silk ropes
like a spider was wrapping us
in a sad and sturdy home. On the way
to pre-school my son asked if we
might have to hold umbrellas forever.

Through the window, I watched him build
a day of his own with fingerpaints.
He didn’t repeat the world’s mistakes.

He made the sun yellow, the sky as blue
as a new boy. He was giving
the stick figures smiles and beach balls

just as a rainbow climbed into the mist
over the huge clock on city hall.
It was as blurry as puddled gasoline.
The sky was copying him, pulling up
some long forgotten oils off the street.

from Rattle #26, Winter 2006


Patrick Carrington: “In me, poetry alternates between being a health and a sickness, a joy and a curse, a defiance and a curiosity, sustenance and an addiction. I write for the click and clack of words that give me peace, and to drain infection, poisons I must release. If I don’t, I hurt. I write because someone told me not to once. I write because I saw a person with twelve fingers, and I want to know if I’m him, or he’s me, or I’m you. I write because it feeds me, and I need it in the vein.”

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