Day Eighteen: ‘Harrigan-Brady’

April 19, 2015

There are two Bobbies in my life, or were,
as they’ve since both flitted from me like summer bugs.
The first: Bobby Harrigan, who plopped a toy
truck on the map carpet we sat cross-legged on
and drove straight through the kindergarten ice
with a, “Do you want to be my friend?” I didn’t know
because what was a friend then? But sure, we agreed
there, as crawling monkeys in the classroom.
He asked the same of all the boys, come to find out,
and most girls except for Brittany with the weird
hair. Eventually, I opted for Matthew C. and Adam,
their luxurious coolness won over Bobby’s fruit-fly
persistence (even his gift-giving needed work).

We uprooted eastward in ’97
and again I fell in with a troublemaker
for his wrestling cards and talk-back attitude,
then split up when we moved again. Alone,
for the first time without a Bobby propositioning
me with genteel friendship. No Bobbies in the new class,
but Bobby on TV — the youngest Brady.
Adorable curls and goblin grin, he wanted
the world to be his friend, and I lived in that world
though mostly in my living room under the coffee table,
occasionally bumping my head. Bobby Brady:
future paraplegic, present amigo,
foundation for an unfolding life of tying strong
to fiction and feelings, however they spill out.

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