how do you know when you’ve grown up?

when you hear applause rather than bird songs,

when the flashing neon lights blind you more than the shaft of sunlight

breaking through the leaves,

when a touch fires up the synapses, and the heat rises

from the gut to the eye ball,

when before, it was just skin connecting with skin.

when you trade the milk bottle, the soda bottle, the mug of hot cocoa

for a shot glass or an ice cold rum coke

 

that’s when you know you’ve grown up

the passing off one object for another,

a constant state of handling, like an unbroken chain

filled with things taken and things left behind

 

how do you know when you’ve grown up?

 

when you hear the crashing of waves in the beach

over the sound of applause and senseless chatter,

when the reflection of the sunlight sparkling on the sea

seems brighter than the flash of cameras and neon lights,

when the warmth of the body lying next to you

is hotter than the contact of someone’s lips on your skin,

when you have a glass of whatever drink that takes your fancy

at that given moment tastes better than any drink you may have had

in the past

 

that’s how you know you’ve grown up

handing things over to someone younger,

taking the trappings of someone older

and then making it your own

 

2 thoughts on “how do you know when you’ve grown up?

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