the edge of childhood

Painting by Joy Watts

What do you think is in the forest? …

I think that’s where all my missing footballs are.

I’d say there are dragons with great big blue wings.

Not dragons. There is a village of foxes that make a plan every day how to get our chickens.

Or a trail that leads to a magic waterfall that, when you swim in it, takes you to a palace in the mountains.


Don’t be stupid. It’s just a bunch of trees.

How could you say that? You’ve still never been in there.

Do you think that anything would happen to me if I looked for my footballs?

The dragons would help you, they are nice dragons.

The foxes are probably using them to practice sneaking.

Maybe they fell into the waterfall. Oh! Can I go look for you?

Woof woof

That isn’t even realistic. You’d just get scratches all over you, and for what? Nothing.

Who cares if it’s realistic. Can’t you remember how to just have fun anymore?

Maybe we should send her in to look for them. If she comes out alive then it’s safe.

I think I just saw one! Did you see that bit of blue? Look!

I missed it. Think that the foxes and the dragons are friends?

Probably, I don’t see how they could be anything but friends when they drink such delicious magic water.


You are all crazy. I don’t know why I even bother with you. You are so immature.

Maybe you just can’t see from there. Why don’t you climb the fence like us?

There could be anything in there. Climb up! Tell me what you can see.

My dragons might even like you enough to let us see them again.

Your dragons? If they are your dragons then the foxes are mine.

Climb up with us. You used to love this. Remember the birds that used to sing their songs just for us?

Woof woof

… well … maybe … just this one last time.

*This writing was in response to the painting above for Space/Place A Visual and Literary Art Exhibition for Core Art @ St. Catherine’s, June 2015.

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