Remember the tomato garden beside grandma's green garage? The fruit so warm from the sun that when you bit into it your tongue came undone? Remember the pink walls? The ones that looked so tall when we gazed in from the hall? Remember the bruises and scrapes, bare feet and band-aids? How outside was home to our silly games and friendly nick names?
Remember the dream where we run but don't move? Where there are heavy bricks instead of small shoes? I wish you could understand, but I know it can't be. The years played a twisted joke on you and me.
The tomato garden is dead. Weeds grow cold beside the garage of the now-vacant home. Weeds grow throughout that familiar ground all alone. The pink walls are beige. The brush swept over our pink as we watched with stale eyes, and with it the princess gowns and make-believe crowns no longer lived in our pink palace compound. Our new room is so ignorant of the fairytales we created; the magic, the monsters, and all things related. The bruises and scrapes, barefeet and band-aids no longer trace our care-free legs, for the days of playing outside with brothers and friends has indeed come to its own sudden end. The adventures of the backyard we no more comprehend.
I know you are sad, I am too. The dream became real and I cannot move. The term "growing up" always seemed so untrue. Now it is as real as Santa is to you. It is the stray cat that we named on the street. Or the doll that no longer sits on the window seat. It's the school lunches that mom stopped packing to eat. Or our childhood friends that we no longer meet.
It's all that is lost without permission or warning. Our childhood innocence I write to you mourning.
I don't want to say goodbye, so I'll tell you this: I'm giving Time's joke my own little twist. I'm taking you with me wherever I go. But don't you worry, no one has to know.
I'll tell you this secret if you promise to keep it, give me your pinky so I know that you mean it.
I still taste the tomatos when I feel August sun rays. I still see the pink when I close my eyes some days. And the impressions of the backyard are with me always.
See you soon,