Just Age Four

by Yolanda Shabazz

We did ABC's, and our one, two, three's
We sang, we danced around
Mom-Mom don't have the energy you do
So let's go upstairs and sit down.
"Not yet Mom-Mom, we still have to play
I like being here with you. We can have more fun, okay?"
You hugged my neck, kissed my cheek
Said, "I have an idea"
Oh no! To make me look chic!

You combed and brushed and twisted my hair
Said, "I have an idea. You need something to wear."
You mismatched my clothes, tied my scarf too tight
Said, "You know what Mom-Mom? You look just right!"
"I'll get my coat. We can go to the store."
I looked in the mirror and thought, we'll use the back door!

We stepped in the yard, I said, "Look over there.
You can run and play ball. I'll hide near the stair."
As you played and had fun, I wondered who's in control
I think it's you, and you're four years old.
I heard you say, "Mom-Mom, I like bugs. Do you like bugs, too?
You can't have mine. Yours is next to you."
I jumped up quick, and said, "We have to go.
You can't pick up bugs. Boy! Don't you know?"

Wash your hands. I'll fix you something to eat
Playtime is over. Please sit in your seat.
You must take a nap, and at quarter of three
We'll ride in the car to pick up your Mommy.
"I'll wash my hands. I won't get my shirt wet
But, I can't go to sleep. It's not dark time yet."
So you talked and asked questions
And you talked some more.
I finally had to ask, "Have you been here before?"

You passed on the milk. You preferred to sip herbal tea
You complimented the cook for making 
Good peanut butter and jelly.
I learned that brothers can't fight
They must share all their toys
Mommy will take you lots of places
If you say you'll be good boys.
"Mom-Mom, when my Daddy went to work
I cried like a big baby.
I know my Daddy has to work! I didn't cry lately."

I looked at the clock. Where did the time go?
I enjoyed your company. I must tell you so.
"Mom-Mom, my nap, you didn't tell me when?
Never mind, I'll come back tomorrow
Maybe I'll be sleepy by then."

Just Age Four by Yolanda Shabazz

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