To Me at Sixteen

by Kerry Hammerton

Our hair is the same length,
parted on one side,
mine highlighted blonde.
I still have that lopsided grin
and the deep grooves
that run from nose to mouth.
My right thumb remains stubbornly
shorter than my left.
I am heavier but three inches taller.
You are wearing your school uniform,
black jersey over a blue summer dress,
stretching the school rules,
and me? I have become conservative
in ways that you could never imagine.

Fiftieth School Reunion

by Lise Day

Gum boot dancing in the hall
as we shuffle in to sing
the old school song.
I am glad to come home
leave behind sad fellow pupils
now wrapped in crinkling folds of age,
forget the trysts behind the bicycle shed
the inky horror of algebra exams,
race studies in fusty apartheid text books
while helicopters hovered overhead,
Sharpeville running red with blood
We, unaware, sent home early.

Planting for the future spring
on Freedom day I am in my garden
where scarlet nerines explode with joy.

Waldorf

by Lise Day

Waldorf 1

First she finds two straight sticks
not too thin nor too thick
sands and smoothes each one
chooses the yarn freshly spun
‘In through the front door
running round the back
peep through the window
and off jumps Jack’
Class five tasked to teach class one
so teenage boys must forgo
their macho images just so
stitch by stitch bit by bit
my granddaughter learns to knit.

Waldorf 2

Even now I am old and wear purple
shocking pink varnish on my toes
don penguin patterned socks
and my luminous lime green crocs
wear a battered hat with roses
love to dance to golden oldies
I cannot get an eyebrow raised
Waldorfians are quite unfazed
considered eccentricity is the norm
to be different is to run true to form
the only way I can make my name
is to let my grandchild play a computer game.

Waldorf 3

In this season of festivity
we present the age-old nativity
my daughter longed to be Mary
or a pretty angel at least.
My son fancied the role of leopard
till he discovered it was shepherd.
My granddaughter on the other hand
desires a role far less grand
she wants to be the donkey mild
who carries Mary and the unborn child.

Waldorf

by Lise Day

Homespun

First she finds two straight sticks
not too thin nor too thick
sands and smoothes each one
chooses the yarn freshly spun
‘In through the front door
running round the back
peep through the window
and off jumps Jack’
Class five tasked to teach class one
so teenage boys must forgo
their macho images just so
stitch by stitch bit by bit
she triumphantly learns to knit.

Waldorf 2

Even now I am old and wear purple
shocking pink varnish on my toes
don penguin patterned socks
and my luminous lime green crocs
wear a battered hat with roses
love to dance to golden oldies
I cannot get an eyebrow raised
Waldorfians are quite unfazed
considered eccentricity is the norm
to be different is to run true to form
the only way I can make my name
is to let my grandchild play a computer game.