A Child’s Champion - First Place
By Ronae Redwine
When you’re still too small
to reach the highest shelf,
you must wear a brave face.
Fears are not grounded in loans
And what frightens you
has less to do
with wondering what is your place in the world,
and more with just trying to understand the world
Emotions run so high,
that confusion borders on terror.
Too young to understand the terrors,
so you change it.
Into a creature,
Massive in size.
Massive in threat.
That slinks through the shadows,
only visible from the corner of your eye.
Able to drag you into midnight black abyss
because your hand happens to dangle off the edge of the bed.
despite this world of never ending fears that would make even King quake,
and feelings that cannot be put into words
so they are released as frustrated sobs.
These feelings lost
to those who can reach the high shelves.
Fears are silenced with a whispered hush.
A protector made from plush.
Soothing you while you sleep.
Fighting the beast
that lives in the shadows
Fighting your fight.
Fighting those fears.
A best friend and a champion.
Until you’re old enough to know
the shadows hold nothing.
And your fears were nothing
more than a child’s imagination.
And since you’ve retired the sobs
you retire the hero.
Where he remains in all his glory on the highest shelf.
Tattered, worn, signs of age show
from all those nights
standing toe to toe
keeping the beast at bay.
From being held a little too tight
when there was nothing else to hold on to.
Too beloved to throw away
but too childish to hold dear
Still he watches over you.
Your teddy bear.