Thursday, November 4, 2010

Note on "Diana"

Yesterday when I posted the poem "Diana" I did it because I hadn't posted a poem for awhile and this was a recent one. I have no idea why this memory resurfaced. Today it occurred to me that some might find it a bit morbid, but I hope not because it was not intended that way.

Every child faces a moment when they begin to understand the notion of death. It might be the death of a pet or even a bird that has flown into a window. This poem was written about that moment for me as a very young girl. The unfathomable idea that someone was here one day and gone the next. Where did she go? Why did it happen? How did the mother feel? Even at my young age I pondered all those questions.

We also all receive those clever emails about how we all survived the "good old days" of freely playing in our neighborhoods without the worry and fear that children now must be impressed with. Yes, those days were good, but some things have changed for the better. I remember not reinforcing the wearing of bicycle helmets for my children because I never had one! I survived riding no-hands down the street for years! I thought it took all the joy out of bike riding.

But imagine a time when the school bus dropped off a child and just stepped on the gas. Or having no law in place for cars to stop when children are exiting the bus and crossing the street. The time before those blinking red lights and stop signs moving outward to warn us all to slow down. Sometimes I think we've become too cautious in our many fears - but some things are better. Did this little girl, Diana, help change some of those laws? I really don't know. But her story impacted my young mind.

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