Ten perfect fingers

The tiniest of eyelashes frame delicate blue eyes
Nestled perfectly in his chubby face
He stirs a little, murmurs and sighs
But remains at peace, which is a relief
To his mother, so tired, laid on her bed,
She reaches over, her fingers brush his golden hair
Soft like down.
She marvels at the softness of his skin
So smooth, untouched, unlived in
He is perfection.
He is unbridled hope
His ten perfect fingers, his ten tiny toes.
His eyes softly open, take in this new world
Viewed through perspex walls
He sees one like him
But not
A mass of black curls atop of her head
Her skin just as soft
Just as untouched
Less peaceful she cries, and her mother stirs
Reaches out to her little girl
So small, so fragile, and yet, her whole world,
So much might contained in her tiny frame,
How will she make her mark, her name?
She is perfection
She is unbridled hope
Her ten perfect fingers, her ten tiny toes.

The boy blinks. His teacher smiles.
Tongue out, brow furrowed, he writes his name
Those perfect fingers, awkwardly gripping his pen
He tries, and tries and tries again
Until he gets it
He’s got it
“I can do it!” he shouts
Ten perfect fingers, ten tiny toes,
Still grasping the future, still full of hope
They stop in the park, as they make their way home
A boy full of life, watched by his proud mum
There’s a girl on the swing with scabs on her knees
Swinging higher and higher, her laugh catching on the breeze
There’s dirt on her face and a twinkle in her eye
A nest of black hair and a world full of life,
Ten perfect fingers cling onto the swing,
Ten growing toes, a world full of hope
But perhaps decreasingly so.

He blinks.
He guffaws
His friends all laugh too,
They’re out for dinner, graduation day
He did okay
A reasonable 2:2
Has a job all lined up, the future looks rosy
His ten perfect fingers, raise in the air
He calls over the waitress, he wants a Negroni
“And get one for yourself” he adds
Splashing the cash
She forces a smile, “Thank you, Sir”
She pockets the tip, smooths down her hair
Tucks an unruly black curl behind her ear.

He blinks, he is seventy, still in his prime
His wrinkled skin once unlived in, has seen better times,
The hair once golden, is pretty much grey,
But he’s happy and healthy and still doing okay.
As he steps out of the gym, and heads to a bar
He is stopped in his tracks by a funeral car
He takes off his hat, notes the flowers reading “mum”
Feels grief for a moment, for this stranger, unknown
Sees the tears in the eyes of the family she’s left,
Three beautiful girls, with black curls atop of their head.

He blinks, his mothers hand feels warm, he lets out a cry
His mother gazes over with so much love in her eyes,
Her perfect boy, so full of hope, she lifts him up, pulls him in close
Smiles at the woman in the next bed
With the gorgeous girl with the curly black head
“She’s perfect” she says, the woman smiles “I know’
“Don’t you just love their ten fingers, and ten tiny toes”