My Daughter’s Question

“Mummy, if 10 x 10 equaled 50, 
would our paper planes fly straight?”

I know the rain was heavy
because the bedraggled underpass
(with plinking echoes
and the green glitter of smashed bottles) 
smells mysteriously of mint.
I lift my nose and my voice 
to the early snare of Ravel’s Bolero
adding other instruments
as best I can.  The bushes
that march past are  
photinia hedges and domed topiary
and the dog stops to pee.
I peer into the leafy palisades
and Bolero is interrupted
by my throaty whisper
“I can’t cry as prettily as you.”

Even the blind bat must try to predict echoes.

Written for Miz Quickly QnV28 “answer a question as unsatisfactorily as it would normally be answered.”

13 thoughts on “My Daughter’s Question

  1. Questions like this (which I KNOW children WILL ask) reaffirm my decision to remain child-free. Answers as stellar as this make me wish I were a better poet. P.S.: Bats aren’t blind, they just like to keep their eyes closed.
    Awesome writ!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Really? I mean thanks for the lovely compliments but I thought that was an awesome question. Well anyway she was smiling when she said it . It was a comment on her father linking everything to maths all the time. Interesting about the bats. I knew they weren’t completely blind. But surely their eyesight isn’t great and that’s why they developed this amazing sonar technique.

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    2. The truth is, I felt I had to put a descriptor in that would tell people i was referring to the animal bat, not the thing used for hitting balls. I remember now that I considered taking it out but decided it was essential. I could name a type of bat like “the fruit bat” but that doesn’t really appeal. After your comment, I googled. You’re of course right. Maybe I will have to consider another adjective or a collective noun.

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