Down to assembly swiftly march,
white cotton shirts, so stiff and starched.
Sun lighting portrait of Her Majesty the Queen,
darkening shadows flitting in between.
Afternoon stories and nursery rhymes,
snakes and ladders for wet playtimes.
Slide headlong through the shelter shed,
grazing elbows, banging heads.
Scratching chalk across a clouded slate,
rag ball kicked against a goalpost gate.
The gold downey hair on Sarah's arm
unfamiliar frisson of sweet alarm.
Names cut deep inside our desks,
two eggs brought in from the starlings nest.
Nearer to me than yesterday,
ever so close yet far far away.