Battle

Billy Johnson, now grown three-
With fat fingers clutch and claw-
Choc'ate drips leave a convenient trail
For Nana Johnson to follow home.

Big Wheels churn up the dust
While ankles rev up the noise.
I shuttle back like a crab
To escape certain death or dust.

His eyes focused forward,
Chocolate clutched tight.
A neighbor's tabby cries in pain
Childish laughter almost the same.

Nana finds the roaming boy-
Cuddles and kisses
Bring the Tiger home
A sleepy head lies cradled

Revealing the angel within.
Tabby licks injured tail
And strikes hard at a leaping cricket
I take myself inside, knowing I've seen battle.

by Charlotte Ballard

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