Family Gathering 2019
Children always feel better if they know.
If you say that you are going to do three things today, they will hound you to death until they can count them. It isn’t so much what is planned but that something is planned at all which might include them.
They want to know what and when.
Who cared that the sun was still in the sky? Didn’t Grandpa’s yard have lots of shade cast by old trees and places to hide?
Yes. It did.
Hadn’t Uncle Dan and Uncle Tim been fussing around with electronic things in the garage for an hour?
Yes. They had.
Hadn’t these two figured out how to keep score on a laptop computer?
Yes. That is what we heard.
Out of the water,
away from the water slide
and into your shoes.
(Swimming suits are okay.)
Laser Tag for Twelve
Two Teams: Green and Blue
When the Buzzer Sounds Return to Base
and Report Your Scores
Down the stairs came the Green Team.
Games later the Blue Team
Losing never comes easily for kids.
They take games very seriously
and fully expect everything to go their way.
Sometimes it does and sometimes it doesn’t.
Sometimes you win and sometimes you don’t.
When children lose they usually think
that something wasn’t fair.
When children win
they think that things were very fair.
Uncle Tim and Uncle Dan rearranged the teams.
Everyone got to play with everyone
and even Grandpa hid behind a tree
and aimed his laser at his opponent.
Even the youngest child
figured out how to play by watching.
Since the game stretched out for hours, sometimes the kids were in swimming suits and sometimes in dress-up clothes. As the sun went down, the tiny red dots could be seen behind the trees and darting around the yard. Sometimes the kids were on the deck and sometimes behind the holly hocks. Now and then they crouched behind a garbage can or tried to blend in with the swing set.
It was a quiet game for the most part. No one wanted to give away his or her position so they darted between things for cover and struck when they saw a clear opening.
I glanced out of my window
long after the sun had gone down.
The yard was dark
but laser blasts flew around like fireflies
and I could hear muffled voices in the trees.
I think that we will play laser tag again.