I had not met the child you were
until I saw the photograph
that caught your eyes spread wide with fear.
You sat on a step, hunched and cold,
a waif who never hoped to laugh.
I'd heard the tales your people told,
crafting a happy long ago
to hide dark things they'd rather forget.
I asked what happenings compelled
so sad a photo, hoping you
might show a part of you as yet
unknown to me. You would not say.
You took the picture from me, and put
the family photographs away.