In a garden in Amsterdam

Here in this garden in Amsterdam
the grass has been grown in four strips,
and single wildflowers emerge at intervals,
splashes of colour amongst the green,
a creative statement in any language.

Here in this garden in Amsterdam
two children race around the strips,
chasing with delight, as children do,
until the boy slips and falls at a corner,
and his shocked joy transforms
into wails of pain, filling the garden.

We in the garden are visitors, strangers.
We wait to see who is the mother,
but no-one moves.
The cries continue, unanswered waves of sorrow,
separating us all from anything but this moment.
An old lady moves tentatively towards him.

Then a swirl of energy emanates from the house,
rushes to him, gathers him in her arms,
talks the language of love and concern and guilt.
Then the father appears, takes his son on his knee,
wraps him in the protection of his love.

Here in Amsterdam, the garden slowly reappears,
and we, less strange now, move in it once more;
strips of grass and single wildflowers re-emerge,
a manifestation of love in any language.

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