Real kids

Real Kids


Real Kids

Until the day you’ve climbed a tree,
gained a splinter, grazed your knees.
Until the day you’ve danced in mud,
you’re not a real kid.

Until the day you’ve felt the breeze,
from peddling bikes at record speed, with spokes that click from lolly sticks;
you’re not a real kid.

Until the day you’ve shouted “CAR!”
whilst friends roll twigs in roadside tar.
Played kerbie, wallie, knock and run;
you’re not a real kid.

Until your jumper’s lay on grass –
a goalpost for your footy match –
or found some wood to build a den;
hid whilst someone counts to ten.
Built a snowman.
Kicked up leaves.
Fished with nets in babbling streams.
Launched a kite into the sky.
Made a paper plane that flies.
British Bulldog, ‘cross the street.
Ice cream vans and bags of sweets.
Found your way without an app;
no mobile phone, no Google maps.
Had a ‘clip’ for giving cheek.
Grounded for at least a week.
Played with friends you actually see,
and only venture home for tea.
Sweating, dirty, full of beans,
sharing how your day has been …

Until you’ve done these things and more,
you’re not a real kid.

So, if you’re spending all your days,
before an Xbox, playing games;
or rooted to your PS 4,
whilst life goes by outside your door:
then hear me when I say to you,
you’re not a real kid.

You will not die, you won’t be damned,
if you come off your instagram.
Nor will you burn in Satan’s fire,
If you leave TikTok for an hour.

Just step outside and breathe the air,
for that’s the real world out there.
Not lost inside your C. O. D.
Grand Theft Auto, Witcher 3.

Walk in sunshine, walk in rain,
clear the fog that clouds your brain.
Find the awe that nature brings.
Crack a smile and start to sing.
Kick a football, run a mile.
Go sit in the park a while.

For when you do these things, and more … well:
You’ll be a real kid.

P. A. Davies 2023

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