The Scent of Sunlight

There is sun all around. 

My childhood was full of sunlight. 

And that little, haunting peek of sea, blue as the sky through the crack in the rooftops if you stood in the right place.  Mom says that the clouds and the blue sky kept her going in her loneliest days on the other side of the world. 

I wouldn’t know. 

For me they were days of laughter.

Of flapping white sheets drying on the roof. Where little wicker chairs could be put between like inside a tent.

There was the thrill of ‘oh-no’ when the paper airplane sailed over the ten foot concrete wall into the neighbor’s yard… forever lost.

There was sitting on the warm rough concrete, imagining myself balancing on the thick wall.  Walking out along the wall to the corner where it met other walls.  Walking forever on the tops of walls, peering into banana-tree-filled back yards.  It was like a magical walkway through the city.

But I never went more then a few steps out on that path.  I was the less cautious than my sister, but I was still cautious.


It was sunlight that glowed through the crack under the door as we scribbled kind notes and folded funny shapes to adorn the table with our ‘Super Supper Surprise’.

The sun sparkled boldly off the water, nearly dazzling my eyes, as I scooped dead flies with a flower sifter.  We had to clean the water from the little inflatable pool before we swam.  Although we should have called it splashing.

There was sun on my neck as I perched on the wall by the street, tying dry strands of weed-grass together, one at a time.  Careful or they break.  We made a string of grass that stretch all the way up to the front balcony.  I made most of it and it was my idea.  I remember that with warm pride.

Sun mixed with pretend food in the little green basket as I lowered it from the balcony to my waiting sister below.

Sun winked off the slinky as it sprung a whole story down yet stayed in my hand.

Sometimes the stray cat mom fed, Old Yowler, was so hot with the sun that it almost hurt to pet her.


My childhood was full of flat roofs and balconies.

Of stray cats and dress up clothes.

And most of all, with the warm happy scent of sunlight.

The End

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