Monday September 7th, 2015

The exercise:

Write about: falling.

Spent most of my day with Max. We played in the park for a while, which mostly involved kicking his soccer ball back and forth across the field. But also included some time on the swings and slides. One of which had a rather steep ladder. Which he managed perfectly well going up.

But then he surprised me and wanted to go back down the way we came up, instead of taking the slide. He was already on the first step before I realized what was happening and I thought it was safer to tell him to hold the railing than make a grab for him.

To his credit, he was holding on to the railing when he slipped. It didn't stop him from falling the rest of the way down though. I endured a minor heart attack as I climbed down after him, but he was surprisingly okay after a fairly short cry and a big hug. Just a little bruise on his left arm and a little bump behind his left ear.

And of course he wanted to go right back up there again. I told him I had to come down first, so that I could catch him if he slipped again, and he agreed. But then he got distracted by some rocks on the second step and we eventually just came back down and went back to kicking the ball again.

Parenting a toddler, you guys. Jesus Christ.

Anyway. We went into town and got some groceries and hung out at our favorite coffee shop before I dropped him off at Kat's parents house for an hour or so while I got the barbeque going for dinner. I got him to sleep tonight and ended up falling asleep beside him for about an hour before Kat came in and woke me up.

Right, picture. This is him with the nest we built at the park last week:


He was very proud of it and wanted to use my phone to take some pictures of it. Twenty'ish shots later I had to take my phone back.

Mine:

Slipping,
Losing grip.
Fall in
Slow motion;
Breathing
Comes full stop.
Terror
Grips my blood.
Landing
With a thud.
Silence
Follows and then
Screaming...
His or mine?
Descend,
Hold him tight
Until
The tears stop
And then
Words return,
Followed
By the smile
That brings
My heart back
To life
Once again.

3 Comments:

Greg said...

Oh wow, that all sounds very exciting for Max! I'm sure the fall was soon forgotten, although I can imagine some entertaining moments with you, Max and Kat where Kat asks Max what he did today and he says he fell off the top of the slide... :) Children heal fast though and a little bruise and a small bump are pretty much par for the course for them.
The picture is indeed adorable and well worth sharing, thank-you! I'm not sure what bird Max was hoping would use his nest, but I'm sure they'd be very proud to own it (and happy not to have had to build it themselves). So... are all twenty photos of the nest on your phone still? ;-)
I think you've managed to capture the... excitement? thrill? urgency... of your trip to the park today in that poem. The very short lines and the capitalisations create a great slow-motion, horrified-moment effect, especially the "Screaming..." line and the ones that follow it. If I had any criticism it's that you might lengthen the lines a little at the end when things are returning to normal to lead the reader to the conclusion that things are over.

Falling
Far away, where gravity does the laughinG,
Aliens gather to sport and play iN
Lionhead nebulae. Of all their many toys, I
Like least the ones for 'boys'. AlL
I see is tinged with red; I hear the screams, I calL
Naively out to these unlikely angels of the fall. A
Gasp... and I know another life has been switched ofF.

[A bit of an experiment today to see if we can run an acrostic down the start of the lines and up the end of the lines. The middle three lines need work, I think.]

morganna said...

Falling down
Stairs: Mama runs, catches, screams.
Caught baby in time.

*****************
My own experience with my son falling when he was about Max's age -- he climbed up the back stairs to our deck while I was in the yard.

Marc said...

Greg - yeah, I was smart and told Kat first. Some things are best coming from me first :P

I copied his pictures on to the computer actually. I've got a folder of pictures he's taken (excessively blurry and close ups of nothing get deleted though) in case he wants to look at them. Or I do.

That's a hell of an experiment! I'm impressed that you pulled it off, though I can see room for some improvement. That's hardly criticism though, seeing as I'd never even attempt this myself :)

Morganna - yeah, kids do that, huh? Ooh, stairs! La la la la...

Glad you managed to catch him :)