Excursion (Amsterdam Zoo)
We have always been good at this
hanging out, eating chocolate,
losing a week here and there when we were students,
now there are 4 kids to consider
(3 mine, 1 yours) who need entertaining.
Later than we meant to the tram
it weaves through the city,
all the things we won’t see.
Queue, turnstile, zoo,
I don’t remember what was in the first house
except the smell, the boys couldn’t stay in there.
Then the reptiles, how proud my kids are
of the frill-necked lizard
‘we see them in our school-yard.’
The most alive lions
I’ve ever seen, pacing the enclosure
breaking into a run.
Lunch at a pirate ship playground
a sea-gull stealing our last sandwich
kids and chips and crying.
Butterfly house slows them to a sleepwalk
butterflies land on outstretched hands
her T-shirt, his hair.
We end with ice-cream and photos
the kids pulling faces, insane,
you and me smiling.