By Rick Alimonti

There was a time
When phones stuck to the wall
If you weren’t at home,
You just missed the call.

There was no message,
Or voice mails stored away
No blinking red light
Imploring hit “play.”

With no phone in our pocket
We set out alone
We received no alerts
By vibrate or tone.

We just rang a doorbell
Called our friends out to play
No calling ahead
Or text, “on my way.”

We went to the park
Disappearing from sight
We found our way home
At day’s last rays of light.

We were set free to be kids
Our world was monkey bars and swings
Or a fort we might build
From odd boxes and things.

We sped through streets on our bikes
No bright vest; no headgear
We all returned safely
Having felt no fear.

Yet by some form of magic
Mom and dad always knew
Who we were with
And what we would do.

Each Mom knew each kid
And each mom each kid knew,
And all the moms and the dads,
They each knew them too.

So this magic despite
All the deeds done and dared
Was really no more than
Well, everyone cared.

We were everyone’s business
Any parent felt free to correct us
Yet we learned from mistakes.
No one tried to perfect us.

Like all kids, we learned best
When permitted to fail.
We just dusted off -
That much wiser from the tale.

So there’s my short homage
To a youth simple and fun.
Oops, there’s my son’s text,
Sorry, gotta run!








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