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Jul 5
There was a short fight
in the middle school playground
between Wilton
(whose jacket I held)
and some big kid
named Saxon
(two kids held his coat).

What it was about
I don't know,
but Wilton squared up
to Saxon and Saxon stood
like a barn door,

A crowd of kids
gathered chanting:
fight, fight, fight.

I watched as they began
to wrestle each other,
but Saxon being stronger,
pushed Wilton to the ground.

I helped him up saying,
Box don't wrestle.

He threw a couple
of punches which hit
the big kid's arm;
Saxon threw a wide punch
which caught Wilton
on the chest
and he went down.

I helped him up saying,
Move in close
and gut him.

He moved in close,
weaving past Saxon's
pathetic defences,
and drove his right
into the big kid's gut,
and Saxon winced
and just as he was about
to retaliate, two prefects
came and hauled both kids
off to the head master,
after we handed them
their coats.

The girls in the playground
never came to watch the fight:
they played skip-rope
or hop-scotch.

The boys dispersed
back to their games,
and I walked with Jupp
taking about the rumble,
but I couldn't understand
what he said half the time
because of his mumble.
Kids in London in 1958
Terry Collett
Written by
Terry Collett  71/M/England
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