CHITTER-CHATTER

I recall a time of hugs
Welcomes by a handshake,
        a kiss.

Now young children dutifully step
        back
From the ‘danger’ of me,
        others, all.

They only run towards their friends
        Pull up
        Short!
        Stop!

Embarrassed glances at their shoes
Shy peeks at each other.

Laughter breaks the frightened spell.
Chitter-chatter, chitter-chatter.
Their magic world
            Reactivated.

by Annika Perry