Child’s Play

I had walked about 20 yards past this swing before it actually registered that it was.


Tree swings, after all, are common to my personal history. Backyard. Front-yard. Any yard. They were made to be swung in, to swing in, to hang from, fall off of, and the like, and in my childhood neighborhood they were ubiquitous. They got used by everyone, young and old. At eight or nine they were prime instruments of torture for your younger siblings and for girls (assuming you were a boy). At 11-12 they transformed into neutral ground for re-establishing relationships with the girls who had survived the earlier hazing and with whom you might just be on speaking terms. A few years later they were repurposed into rendezvous points for testing romantic skills. And many years later they became parental projects that would start the cycle over once again.

They were all these things and more – But they were never ‘noticed’.

So when I noticed this one I wasn’t quite sure how to react. I swear the first thought that came to mind was ‘somebody’s going to hang themselves on that thing!’ Is that crazy? Probably not. More like in keeping with the times. Sad but true. I did have the presence of mind to get a photo. If there had been anyone else around I’d of had them take a shot of me in it. There wasn’t. It would have been an awkward selfie.

And even though it was the right time of day – just after school had let out – there were no children. Also sad. They were probably off to soccer practice or to piano lessons or to working with their tutors.

I should go back. We’ll see

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