Carole Pearce

Leamington Spa
1975. The School.
 
A dilapidated three storey pile, lilac in bloom alongside the back door.
She turns the key. A loud smooth twist in the old lock,
heavy black and white door swings into the wide Victorian hall,
permeated by polish, perfumed products.
She follows the echo down the long passage,
feels cold air snatch spitefully at her nose. 
Repainted metal toy cars parked under the stairs. Intriguing histories,
spent lives, sensed hovering in shadowy corners, gathering on landings, 
watching, seeking absolution. Pockets of damp mould, hang in the air,
drift up from the cellars. Bell – pulls no longer heard by servants.
Dust motes from fuzzy overwashed cardigans,
playgroup fallout, forming it’s own history.
  
She smiles, knows she has scored a minor victory, cheers herself.
The thrill of secret tactile properties, a stream of possibilities:
Fragile jewel bright tissue paper to scrunch, cut, fold, glue.
Dolls, puppets, masks, easels, the Wendy House,
foreign objects in a foreign concept to her charges and their
Ugandan mothers: Play. No joke, the provision of sanctuary, solace.
Pre-schoolers’ daily glee, wild, creative, constructive.
Puffed out cheeks, tongues guiding safe scissors,
the making of meaning, exuberance before the knowing.

The making of meaning, exuberance before the knowing.
Puffed out cheeks, tongues guiding safe scissors,
pre-schoolers’ daily glee, wild, creative, constructive.
Ugandan mothers : Play. No joke, the provision of sanctuary, solace.
Foreign objects in a foreign concept to her charges,
dolls, puppets, masks,easels, the Wendy house.
Fragile jewel bright tissue paper to scrunch, cut, fold, glue.
The thrill of secret tactile properties, a stream of possibilities.
She smiles, knows she has scored a minor victory, cheers herself.
  
Playgroup fallout, forming it’s own history.
Dust motes from fuzzy overwashed cardigans
drift up from the cellars. Bell – pulls no longer heard by servants,
watching, seeking absolution. Pockets of damp mould, hang in the air.
Spent lives, sensed hovering in shadowy corners, gathering on landings,
repainted metal toy cars parked under the stairs, intriguing histories.
Follows the echo down the long passage,
feels cold air snatch spitefully at her nose
permeated by polish, perfumed products.
Heavy black and white door swings into the wide Victorian hall.
She turns the key, a loud smooth twist in the old lock.
Dilapidated three storey pile, lilac in bloom alongside the back door.
 
 
 

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