He climbs into my lap
with 10-year-old gangly limbs,
more elbows and knees than muscles.
His head upon my bosom,
I inhale the sun-stained dirt of his afternoon play.
He lifts and wraps his thin arms around my neck –

the sour punch of soccer sullied sweat
grasps my attention.  

“We need to buy you deodorant.
Your body is growing, changing.”  

He nestles tighter and declares,
“I don’t want to wear deodorant.
I don’t want to grow up.”  

With my cheek upon his head,
I pull him closer…
knowing too soon
his avowal and embrace will give way.