Where It All Began

It seemed so much bigger then,
red brick staunch against the weather,
grey asphalt where we ran together,
played kiss chase (you missed my lips
and kissed my ear), made icy slides in winter.
Those hungry waits in line outside
the small canteen, air laden with indescribable
smells, fingers crossed it was my turn
to be water monitor gingerly approaching tables
with a shiny coloured jug filled to the brim.
I loved the rise and fall of dinner ladies’ chatter,
the chink of plates, cutlery’s click and clatter,
and the glimpses I caught of you across the room,
the boy I grew up with and knew so well – still do.

Kim M. Russell, 5th May 2021

That’s me age six, back row far left. My husband is third from left, middle row.

My response to Poets and Storytellers United Weekly Scribblings #68: Where Are You Placed?

Rosemary is back with excellent examples of ‘poems of place’, including one by Cheong Lee San (dsnake1) which I missed a few weeks ago in the Writers’ Pantry and had the pleasure of reading this morning. I love poems of place and time.  I also enjoyed reading Rosemary’s explanation of ‘poems of place’ and the poem she shared by Matt Rasmussen.

This week we are thinking about places which are special to us for any reason and bringing them to life in poetry and prose.

35 thoughts on “Where It All Began

  1. You’ve recreated this in a way that absolutely brings it to life for me, particularly as my primary school in Tasmania was actually not very different. And oh, how lovely that you and your husband were childhood sweethearts!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh Kim, that really is a long-term relationship: what a heartwarming tale! Your primary school sounds and looks much like mine – I too remember those shiny metal jugs!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Ingrid. There was a huge gap between us getting on tube into the city together at the age of 17 (shortly before I moved to Cologne) and meeting up again when we were 36.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Heartwarming poetry. The magic you captured in portraying your youth, as much as it was about you, I felt like I was in that story too, brought back memories, that I could feel, hear, and smell – those school lunches!

    May you and your husband have many more lucky years, of sweet glances across the room!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, this is perfectly captured, both in place and in person; and its perfection is amplified by such wonderfully specific sensory detail – the clatter, the chatter, the gleam.
    I wish I had something – anything – i could go this far back for.
    Mind-blowingly GOOOOOD, KR

    Liked by 1 person

  5. How far back the memories of your love travel! So few can share that story, and you brought that childish magic of lunch time to all of us. Well done!!!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. What a wonderful story – to have known your husband from childhood. So sweet. When I got married, the same thing happened to me, my ex missed my lips and kissed my ear and the justice of the peace cracked up. We were so young!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. I’m smiling from ear to ear. This is so beautiful, Kim. I can see everything perfectly, feel the joy in the games, the power of the memory, and the bliss of growing up right along the one we love.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I started hearing the sounds of my old grade school, you described everything so vividly. That’s so cute that you and your husband met back then.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Kim, thank you for sharing. You were cute, all the kids were. It’s surprising that you waited so long and that you both were still available. But then my middle son and his wife did the same, she did college here and went back to Venezuela for 35 or more years. They corresponded by mail until 2001.

    Liked by 1 person

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