Freckle face, ponytail, pedal pushers,
and a bike that was my steed;
together we rode along the country miles to the foothills.
In the trees, I was at home.
Indoors, I dove between the covers of a book -
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn, My Friend Flicka,
Thunderhead - to escape my current reality.
In the house, I grew silent and distant, numb.
Away, I clung to my friends, longed for their lives.
My dreams were of Normal Life:
picket fences, milk bottles on porches, and peace.
The summer I turned thirteen, my father died.
So that was the end of being a child.