Easter Break — First Grade

Easter Break — First Grade

Ann Howells

All day the festive hum builds;
Annie waits till Sister wipes the chalkboard,
turns off banks of cubed light then,
hands crayon-scented from coloring
paper lambs, proffers a package
wrapped in pinks and yellows.
Annie doesn’t want eight days’ vacation.

On Easter, church blooms lily white,
and Annie’s gardenia smells sweet
as hot-cross-buns. The six-year-old shimmers,
downy duckling in yellow dress, anklets,
Mary Janes. Ladies, even little ones,
dress brightly, contrast gentlemen’s dark suits.
Still, she is sulky, doesn’t care that the bunny
brought peeps, jellybeans, chocolate rabbits.

A letter arrives on Tuesday:
blue linen paper, artistic script, pen and ink
sketches in margins:

Dear Annie,
Bunnies eat carrots
to grow big and strong. Since Easter,
Sister Cecile has been eating delicious
chocolate eggs and growing fat.
Thank you for your sweet thoughtfulness.

Finally, Annie smiles.

Ann Howells

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