This poem came out of the February 4, 2014 Poetry Fishbowl. It was inspired by prompts from rix_scaedu and kelkyag. It also fills the "childhood romance" square in my 1-31-14 card for the Origfic Bingo fest. This poem has been sponsored by rix_scaedu. It belongs to the series Monster House. It's a sequel to "Not Mine," "Vigil Ante," and "The Girl He Brought Home."
None of us knew,
when the bogeyman brought
a crying toddler to our house
and I put her on the couch
beside my own son,
what would come of it.
When my son was seven,
their paths crossed again,
and he brought Melinda
home from school
to work on a class project.
One thing led to another,
and he kept inviting her over.
She adored the radiator dragon
and the bogeyman.
Everyone loved her.
Sometimes they played together for hours,
getting into and out of all sorts of things
as children and monsters are wont to do.
So that's how
my son wound up wearing lipstick
and the bogeyman wound up with
pink flowers braided into the white silk of his hair
and Melinda wound up with a necklace
made of snake vertebrae and Legos.
Life is a series of
waiting to see if we
will accept or decline.
Love is lipstick and flowers,
bones and toys
on rainy afternoons.
One afternoon I caught them all
parading around to the Wedding March
with my son holding a bouquet of fake roses,
Melinda blushing under a lace doily veil,
and the bogeyman with book in hand
wearing the lurking shadow in lieu of a tuxedo,
and I thought,
Yeah, we can go there.
* * *
Childhood sweethearts appear in real life and entertainment tropes. Childhood romance and friendship teaches young people how to identify and express affection. There are some advantages to marrying your childhood sweetheart later.
Pink flowers and pink roses can mean many different things.
Read about snake symbolism.