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Peter Pan

Mood: Making It Work
Drinking: Diet Coke

Peter Pan

We become adults unexpectedly.
Not when we think we will, and never when
we wish we were. It happens overnight.
You wake to discover a stranger
living behind your eyes.

Wisdom brings with it a weight,
pulls your head down from the clouds
and marries your feet to solid earth
with newfound gravitas.
You no longer chase your shadow.

Age has nothing to do with it.
When a mortar shreds your family
along with your living room
you become an adult on your 10th birthday.

You can remain a child
well into your fourth decade
with your big screen TV and expensive
vehicular toys. But one day the call comes.
You rush to the hospital on the red-eye
barely understanding all the papers you sign
all the plugs that you pull. You wash
your hands with anti-bacterial soap
in the yellow ICU bathroom and
recognize that your childhood ended
somewhere over Albuquerque.

You can grow up in rehab
faster than you sober up
when you take the first step toward serenity
face the mess you made
and make the admission.

Or, when the smallest hand
you’ve ever seen
clutches your index finger
in utter dependence
you can astonish yourself
with your own newborn maturity
and realize your time is up
in neverland.

-Lo, who thinks three’s a charm.

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