First Playground Memories

My response to MindLoveMisery’s Menagerie Heeding Haiku With Chèvrefeuille – our source for inspiration is a quote from Matsuo Basho:

“The temple bell stops but I still hear the sound coming out of the flowers.”


It was my first day at school. The playground was alive with boisterous boys and giggling girls, running and skipping, kicking and throwing balls, while bemused or anxious parents looked on from behind the fence. I stood alone by the gate, holding my satchel tightly by its straps, stunned by the noise. A pungent smell of school dinners steamed from the small canteen, next to the main gate, comforting on a frosty morning. I watched the other children closely, trying to work out what would happen next. And then the hollow clank of a well-used hand bell exploded above the playground racket. I dropped my bag and put my hands over my ears. I wasn’t ready for this.

In a cold playground

early childish impressions

echoes of school bell

© Kim M. Russell, 2016

School Bell

6 thoughts on “First Playground Memories

  1. How vividly you’ve written this Kim, I could imagine being next to your that day .. and how many things were so scary and different form our world until that moment. You’ve brought it all back to me as I read your haibun … the excitement and the surprise! Thanks so much!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I have to admit, I was scared on my first day. Nursery school had been awful and I was dreading infant school. I started after everyone else because I’d been sent to live with my grandparents, so I didn’t know any of the other children. In those days nobody told you what to expect.


      1. I’d never gone to Nursery school to it was right into elementary school for me. I too knew no one as my father had just been stationed to the Philippines with the Air Force … and I too knew nothing of what was expected … I just thought how wonderful it was going to be to be with other children … I don’t have fond memories of my first grade teacher I’m afraid …

        Liked by 1 person

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