Coloring Books
Crayons and plastic dolls and cartoons
Kept me going,
During both my childhoods.
The first and then the second,
They weren’t all that different.
I still remember a cartoon that took place in Japan
From my first childhood,
I’d never seen anything like it,
Not on the late 1960s black and white Mickey Mouse TV we had.
It must have been a gift from the Universe
We’d moved the day before.
My father left my mother hallucinating on the sidewalk,
Forever and forever and forever
Along with my brother and I,
Handsome Jack never looked back.
I told all the kids at school the next day she was my aunt not my mother
When one smart ass 8 year old,
A Triplet,
Laughed at her.
I thought about Japan on the walk home.
Lucky we had TV,
A place to go after school,
Cartoons and fairy stories were my favourite.
I inherited something from my father:
He wasn’t just another hoodooing Marcello Mastroianni,
He believed in fairy tales too.

- Isabelle Ghaneh