• Vol. 05
  • Chapter 04
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When I was a boy

When I was a boy
and other boys were cruel,
I would wonder,
because they had
such peculiar grandparents.

You would meet them
in the street
dressed in purple suits,
both of them,
grandma and grandpa,
each with matching cornflower boutonniere
and trim gold spectacles perched on pointed noses
and red floral Foulard ascots
and mud-drenched soldiers boots,
and they would jointly say
are you Marvin's little friend?

Marvin who had just walloped me,
really creamed me on the playground,
then stood above me and heckled.

But I said yes and they gave me candies:
Rose-flavored lozenges wrapped in brittle paper.
And how did such an aggressively dull thing,
such a clod-shaped, dim-eyed, full-fisted dope,
come from such showy peculiarity?
Would Marvin grow to dress in purple
and pick out cornflowers for his lapel?


When I was a boy

Or had something misfired
and the eccentric
and turned centric
and dull
and mean?