This series of prose imagines the world as seen through different people’s eyes – each sitting on the same park bench at different times and with different life stories.
Park Bench Perspective #3
It’s so unfair! Why do I have sit here on this stupid bench, watching while all the other children get to have fun in the park. It’s all Billy’s fault! He pushed me. That’s why I fell and broke my arm and cried and had to go to hospital and have this ugly plaster cast put on. It’s because of him that I can’t bath properly and it hurts when I go to bed and I have to sit out when everyone in my class gets to play games.
Mommy says I must be grateful, because there are other children, like in Africa, who don’t have arms because they got blown up and don’t even have food or anything. I suppose she is right, although it seems a bit dumb to be grateful for a broken arm. Anyway, at least mommy’s given me lots of cuddles and kisses, that’s something good for sure. And everyone at school feels sorry for me and the teacher gives me less homework.
The boys are nasty though. They call me cry-baby and say silly things like, “did you fall down the toilet.” It makes me so mad, I just want to hit them, or tell daddy how horrible they are being, so that he can give them a good sorting out. But I don’t, ‘cos then I would be a tell-tale, and I’m not a tell-tale. I did tell that once, when I saw Jackie with cigarettes in the girls change room, cos mommy says smoking can kill you and I don’t to die. I thought I was going to die when I fell and hurt my arm, it was so sore …
Look at Jane, sitting at the top of the slide. I bet she’s scared to go down. I’m an expert on the slide. I can go down forwards and backward and upside-down and the right way up and with my eyes closed and with my eyes closed and anyway you like. Mommy says I should join the circus, but I want to be a dancer. I dance every week when my arm’s not broken. And my teacher says if I practice and practice and practice and practice and practice, I might be on TV one day, like famous people. Then I could buy lots of dolls and dresses and have a mobile phone and a car and everything.
Maybe I will get my favourite doll for my birthday. I told mommy when I saw it in the shop. And my birthday is coming up soon. Mommy says I only have to watch the Munchkins on TV another twelve times and then it will be my birthday and will be seven. I love it when the Miss Chiff (that’s the naughty girl Munchkin), hides her brother’s shoes in dog kennel. That’s so funny! And he looks everywhere but he cannot find them. And he sees Rugsy, the Munchkin dog, having his shoes for breakfast…
Hey, look, there’s a dog like Rugsy chasing a ball in the park. I wonder if he had shoes for breakfast. Hee hee. There’s a dog in my picture book that daddy’s reading to me before I go to bed at night. But he’s not like Rugsy. He’s a human dog, not a Munchkin dog, and he eats dog food, not shoes. But he also has spots. Daddy says reading will help to make my arm get better sooner. And while the other children are playing outside, I will be getting cleverer. I hope so, because I think you have to be clever to get on TV.
My friend, Jane, also wants to be on TV, but she wants to be a singer. She also has to practice and practice. Sometimes, we practice together. She sings a song and I dance. We even do a concert for Jane’s granny and grandpa sometimes. And they clap when we are finished. They say we are stars.
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