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My Cricket Kids

By Julie Irigaray

I scan the pitch        teeming with Englishmen

wearing flannels                with wickets and helmets.


Their aristocratic poise                 are for my expat’s eyes

a lazier form of baseball,              both noble and debased.


This is a gentleman’s game,        a settler’s sport:

their China cup        skin let their blue blood appear.


White-collared and starched,       they emerge from

a Forster novel        or Downton Abbey.


I scrutinise them with         a sardonic smile until

I realise my children           might play cricket one day,


not hurling     like their father

nor pelota               like me.


They will belong      to a third culture,

one which will escape me            like cricket’s rules.

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