Her blood drips down my arm,
our jumpers sodden crimson,
wet with tears and blood and snot.
I know it will be my fault.
I lie across her, the thundering roundabout
clangs over two small bodies,
there and gone, there and gone.
We’re too scared to move.
She sobs, squirms, heaves.
Someone’s run off shrieking, “Help! Help!”
A hundred hours later, her cries slow
she shudders, trembles, the tears don’t cease.
Help comes and stops the playground.
A circle of solemn friends watch
as she’s taken away.
Polly Stretton © 2020