I read the contents of your pockets, like tea leaves at the bottom of a cup. Set out the secrets of your hoard across the table.

Here is the collage of a small boy. Here, among the hurried breakfast bowls and mugs of half-drunk coffee.

Items: two muddy mittens, a bubble gum wrapper and a gun shaped twig.

A Pepsi cola bottle top excavated from a hidden corner of the playground and a shred of bubble wrap (all popped).

There is a small tin car and three Freddo wrappers sticky with caramel. 

A scratched up badge shaped like Rasher the comical Beano pig has its pin missing off the back.

There is a well-chewed biro, a neatly folded Haribo packet, two Active Kids vouchers and a box of soggy Funsnaps.

All articles are adorned with the rattling halves of golden chocolate penny foils.

These are the things that draw you to them. The curious finds of my magpie boy, your lovely moon-skulled head on one side, your eyes ablaze.

These are the things that jump out from your horizons, things worth saving and worth something to you.

As I sort through, separate the keeps and saves from the more obvious throwaways, I hold your image tightly in my heart.

Slugs and snails and puppy dog’s tales.

I know that I won’t always be your pocket fortuneteller.

I know that I won’t always be able to spread our your secrets on the table in this way and gaze leisurely into your world.

You will not always be my open, wholesome smelling book, your good true heart written on your face just for me, your smile an illustrated advert of your bona fide self.

One day, soon, you will broaden, deepen, fill out and stubble up. And then your secrets will be censored and carefully selected, my privileges will be lifted and re-assessed and that’s ok.

I will always hold your essence in my heart this way.

Even when your eyes are caught by softer, more dangerous things with curves and coos and lips.

And your pockets tell a different tale of house keys, car keys, phone and wallet.

© Hannah Davies