Nostalgia, Part 2
Is there anything sweeter than being a happy, healthy young person with decades of life ahead of you? Not in my book. Maybe that’s why I’m so nostalgic about childhood, especially the period between ages seven and eleven. For me, that was the sweet spot, a time when I had the freedom to come and go as I pleased (at least during the day) but hadn’t yet been bludgeoned by the woes of adolescence.
In last week’s blog, I looked back on one of my favorite childhood memories. This week, as a companion piece to that blog, I offer my poetic tribute to the little buddies who shared in my excellent adventure.
Me, Sharon, and Merrill
Days lasted weeks. We slept in our houses and
ate there but mostly lived our summer lives
outdoors. We danced hopscotch in the alley. Our
bikes were horses, our arms wings. Our skates
rattled across ribbed sidewalks, throwing us
kneefirst into new abrasions. We nursed mangled
insects on Kleenex beds that doubled as coffins.
On rainy days we swam in the air. When we were
spies, we sometimes forgot we were spies and
chased butterflies instead. We belonged to
each other like Pan’s lost boys; we were a welded
three-pack of marshmallow Easter chicks, and
every night our mothers tore us apart,
abruptly individualizing us before reslotting us
into our proper family units. They dropped us into
baths, where Mr. Bubble dissolved the kidsy smell
of dirt and grass and made us fit for our sheets.
We slept, and in our dreams we found each other
and played on.