pinky is retarded
going on for fifty five
he’s short and stumpy
and rounded
in a strange shape
that brings to mind
a stunted tree

he often wears pink shorts
when he comes
down the hill
with the rest
of the troop
each week
scrubbed and shining clean

he looks his age
but seems to have
no presence or gravity
to go with it
or at least
it’s a wizened look
that’s hard to work out
dull and quiet
but curious
at the same time

until the locals
tease him
about his pants
or his teddy bear
or some other thing
to get him going
for a little sport
or as a demonstration
for visitors

© Frank Prem, 2000


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