The Girl by the Lamp Post

Dishevelled, unkempt and there all alone
she sprawled by the lamp post outside my home.
Where had she come from, and where had she been?
Had she been scared by some sight that she’d seen?
Five a.m. now – had she been there all night?
She really looked quite a pathetic sight.
Was she a druggie or a wayward drunk?
She looked like she’d leaned there and then just sunk
right down the lamp post to the cold, hard ground.
Head on her chest, and not making a sound.
I watched a while but she moved not at all.
I feared the worst for the cause of her fall.
I thought of her parents who would worry,
so I went out to her in a hurry.
No thought for safety or what she might do,
I spoke to her softly and nudged her shoe.
She gradually stirred and opened her eyes,
and words she spoke came as such a surprise.
“Hi Gran, I’ve come over to live with you,
I’ve left Oz for ever, Mum and Dad too!”
At these words, I could recognise her face
(we’d had a row, and she’d left in disgrace).
Filled with emotion, along came the tears
as we hugged and thought of the wasted years.

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