Kindergartner’s Long Walk


It wasn’t a long playground.

More like a long patch of grass

behind our school.


A swing set.

Some monkey bars.

Room to run around.

A couple of benches to sit on.

A perfect recess playground

for us kindergartners

to roam around on.

To laugh,

and play,

and chase each other

until the bell rang.


Laughter filled the air.

The sun was shining.

And there she was.



Across the way,

at the other end of the green.

As pretty as any girl

I’d ever seen

in my entire five-year lifespan.

So I walked up,

and kissed her

on the cheek.




She wiped it off

and ran away,

telling the teacher

in the process.


What was so wrong?

We were just playing



But when the principal

entered the playground,

curling his big pointy index finger

summoning me

to follow him,

I realized playtime was over.

For me.

Quite possibly,



I made the long walk,

Following him across the green

Back into the building,

and up the narrow stairwell.

There was only one room up there.

His office.


Nobody goes up there

And lives to tell about it.


He sat behind his huge desk,

with me slunk down in a chair

across from him.

“What were you thinking?”


I just thought

that Marsha was cute.

So I kissed her.


Young man,


He commanded.



An embarrassing phone call

Made to my home.

I was in trouble,

big time.

My crime?

Premature affection.


Marsha and I

Remained in that same school


through the eighth grade.

But she never spoke to me

Carefully avoiding me in the halls.


For me,

recess was over.

I learned how to play tag,

use the swings

and join the others


But from then on,

After the long walk

That green mile

To the office upstairs

my lips were sealed.





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15 thoughts on “Kindergartner’s Long Walk

  1. Oh dear. That Marsha. Little does she know she’s now part of a Slice of Life! Excellently told – I was right there with you at 5. I remember David, who used to eat glue, but was still my recess target.;-)

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow! Such an impact it made on you. With our interactions with people everyday, we really do not know what kind of marks we will be leaving behind. I wonder what the principal reaction be if he hears the story now.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh yes. The moment ‘that teacher’ started knocking on the window because of our before school shenanigans in the third grade. No kissing, but I swear that teacher’s knock could have broken the window, and I hear the sound as I’m typing this! Thanks for the visualizations this morning!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh, yes, the innocence of a child and a funny story too. Your piece caused me to reminisce about my kindergarten playground. As always, a pleasure to read!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Love it! I wonder if the adults were as serious and stern about it as they seemed to you at 5. Did your mom and the principal share a “be serious, don’t laugh where he can see you” moment?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m sure their soreness was from my 5 yr old perspective. I’m sure they must have shared a smile. But not Marsha. She wasn’t smiling.


  6. Oh, the innocence of youth! You kissed her because she was cute. Maybe asking permission first would’ve been better, but a phone call home seems extreme.

    Loved the format of this slice. It felt so immediate.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. What a funny piece! And yet poignant too, that Marsha never talked to you again. And I agree with Wendy, I wonder why the principal couldn’t have been a little gentler with you??? I take kids to the principal’s office several times each week, but we go for celebrations. They read to her, share their goals, and sometimes even have treats. They love going to the office.

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  8. Seems like that could have been handled a bit more…lightly? Though I remember a boy named David Matzka chasing all the girls around the playground in kindergarten and first grade, trying to kiss us, and how much it bothered me.

    I like the use of free verse (and the echo of “playtime was over…recess was over”). Whenever I attempt it, I just get oddly broken up paragraphs, but this works really well for this story.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. What a moment. Perfect. You remind me of the time I climbed up the jungle gym and came face to face with James White. There was some electricity but alas, no kiss.

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