“Six Years Old on her Grandparents’ Porch” by Penelope Scambly Schott

Her life seemed like two nights and one day
where the first night had been birth
and the last night would be her death
and that single long day stretched so far ahead
filled up with future and furniture
she could almost rock in the white wicker chair
and forgive the world for making her a child
who sometimes still needed to hide
behind the rocker where the porch screen
pressed tiny diamonds onto her young cheek
while the man on the tall Sunday Philco
preached grandly Do unto others
but this girl didn’t want to be done unto
no she did not want to be so undone

Penelope Scambly Schott’s most recent book is How I Became An Historian. She lives in Portland and Dufur, Oregon where she teaches an annual poetry workshop.

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