The Picnic

I trained the sun today,
Barked orders at it,
Teaching it to, “Sit”
“Stay,” and “Play Dead,”
For you on a picnic,
But it didn’t or wouldn’t,
It ran off behind the clouds
And you were suddenly quiet,
Not sullen, just not there,
I called for it to come back,
Whistled and shouted at it,
But it was gone behind the clouds,
Chasing a hare out of view,
Off the leash,
I gave up,
“Pointless,” I thought,
Then you let your bare foot touch mine,
Punched me hard in the shoulder,
And said, “Shut up! You idiot.”
You laughed ‘til you got a stitch,
First time since you were eleven, you said,
I couldn’t honestly remember for me,
We lay back on the blanket,
Looked up through the branches
And spring leaves,
You still half giggling beside me,
“Is that laughter gone forever,
Off gambolin’ behind the clouds?” I wondered,
Or will it comeback again one day,
Just like it did for you?
Suddenly, I felt hopeful
Just a smidge,
I sat up quickly,
Thumped you in the thigh,
A dead leg,
Jumped up and grabbed one of your sand-shoes,
Threw it as far away as I could,
“Go fetch,” I said,
And ran off as fast as I could toward the creek.