Growing Up by Lynn White

Growing Up

Sometimes I borrowed my mother’s clothes
and her make-up, her high heels and handbags.
Of course, they were too big for me.
Same with daddy’s briefcase
and the suitcases we took on holiday trips.
When I saw the tiny red suitcase in the toyshop
I bought it with my birthday money.
It had thick shiny plastic
and looked really swish.
I took it everywhere.

When I grew older, I decided to become an artist
but my childish drawings were only ideas.
So I collected bits of colored pictures,
discarded by older children at school.
Just the ones I liked best
and hid them in my suitcase.
No one got to look inside.
They were my secrets,
my special things
for inspiration
when I was grown up.

I had it all planned.

But by the time I was grown up
my secrets were just bits of torn paper
covered with scribbles and street dirt.
They meant nothing to me anymore,
and my tiny red suitcase
was dull and worn.

Dreams cracked and broke and finally
faded away.

Lynn White lives in north Wales. Her work is influenced by issues of social justice and events, places, and people she has known or imagined. She is especially interested in exploring the boundaries of dream, fantasy, and reality. She was shortlisted in the Theatre Cloud ‘War Poetry for Today’ competition and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize and a Rhysling Award. Her poetry has appeared in many publications including Apogee, Firewords, Capsule Stories, Gyroscope Review, and So It Goes. Find Lynn at her blogspot and her Facebook page.

Image credit: Collage of red cardboard suitcase (, 3D colorful lines (, notepaper (, and paper clips (