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Poem: "Muddled Up" - The Wordsmith's Forge
The Writing & Other Projects of Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith
ysabetwordsmith
Poem: "Muddled Up"

This is the second freebie for today's fishbowl session, courtesy of new prompter jb_slasher from Dreamwidth.  It was inspired by a prompt from rix_scaedu.  This also fills the "Dirty/Messy" square on my card for Cottoncandy_bingo.  The poem belongs to the Monster House series, and you can read more about that on the Serial Poetry page.

Muddled Up


My son stood at the base of the porch
with his friend Melinda beside him,
both of them covered head to toe in mud
that trickled down their small bodies
to pool beneath their sneakers.

The explanation of this was less than clear,
as he picked at drying flakes on his forearm
and she finger-combed her black hair to rattails,
something about a puddle portal and a dare
and a very friendly earth dragon.

"You," I said to them,
"will go stand by the faucet so I can hose you off.
You are not coming into the house like that."

A muffled chuckle beside me
made me turn to glare at the bogeyman.
"You," I said to him,
"were supposed to be watching  them,
by which I meant you were supposed to stop  them
from getting into trouble."

"You're a parent," the bogeyman said.  "You should know
anything that can be fixed with soap and water
does not qualify as trouble."

At the far end of the yard,
the mud puddle rippled,
clay-colored coils rising and then
subsiding again.

"You," I said to the bogeyman,
and then shook my head.
"Nevermind.  Just ... go get the soap."

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Current Mood: busy busy

13 comments or Leave a comment
Comments
thnidu From: thnidu Date: September 18th, 2012 08:39 pm (UTC) (Link)
:-)

(Two kids of our own, + a foster.)

Edited at 2012-09-18 08:39 pm (UTC)
kelkyag From: kelkyag Date: September 18th, 2012 08:51 pm (UTC) (Link)
<looks at the two new poems>

Is the pov character here and in the last section of the other the original narrator, or the wife of the original narrator? I've never been sure of the original narrator's gender, and it's usually been obvious from context which of the human adults in the house was the pov character, but this time I don't know.

And I'll second the bogeyman, at least barring occasions when taking the time to clean up and change would create trouble ...
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: September 20th, 2012 07:05 am (UTC) (Link)

Well...

I have re-edited both poems to focus on the usual narrator, to avoid confusion.
kelkyag From: kelkyag Date: September 20th, 2012 07:43 am (UTC) (Link)
Heh. This one, that makes the gender ambiguous again, which is differently uncertain. :)

The other, I'm less sure I caught the change correctly, but the original narrator say "my girl" and "my wife", whereas I'm not sure we've ever heard Madame the Computer Geek refer to her spouse in a gendered way? Also, I think it might like a "my" before "ear".

Do you know the original narrator's gender/prefered pronouns/...? Does they prefer not to say? The only thing I can think of that pushed one way or the other was that the wife's morning sickness seemed to be something of a surprise, but that leaves plenty of room still for explanations other than the original narrator being (biologically) male.
rix_scaedu From: rix_scaedu Date: September 19th, 2012 09:04 am (UTC) (Link)
A very friendly earth dragon?
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: September 20th, 2012 05:23 am (UTC) (Link)

Yes...

In the mud puddle.
rix_scaedu From: rix_scaedu Date: September 20th, 2012 08:41 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Yes...

I thought so
e_scapism101 From: e_scapism101 Date: September 19th, 2012 01:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Love this! Yes, if you can fix it with soap and water, it's just really not all that bad.
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: September 20th, 2012 03:46 am (UTC) (Link)

Thank you!

That's a key feature of relaxed parenting. Not everyone thinks that way, but it does tend to lower people's stress levels.
ladymondegreen From: ladymondegreen Date: September 19th, 2012 06:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
It sounds like the radiator dragon may have a friend in the yard eventually. :)

Lovely work!
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: September 20th, 2012 04:24 am (UTC) (Link)

Thank you!

No telling which monsters will connect with each other.
From: rhodielady_47 Date: September 29th, 2012 10:23 am (UTC) (Link)
""You should know
anything that can be fixed with soap and water
does not qualify as trouble.""

Amen! Kids and dirt are made for each other.
I have happy memories of many a mud pie from my own kidhood.
:)

ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: September 29th, 2012 04:18 pm (UTC) (Link)

Yes...

>>Amen! Kids and dirt are made for each other.
I have happy memories of many a mud pie from my own kidhood.<<

Yeah, I enjoyed playing in the mud too.
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