It is twilight and the barn is softly lit with lanterns.
Beneath the flowering Poinciana tree, children devise games of intricate complexity –nary an adult can untangle its roots or purposes. Friendships that last a lifetime begin like this: Two 4 year old boys square off. One shoves the other and the other responds with equal force. A respectful stalemate is declared. They run off, instant comrades. The vigor in their run impressive even in the distance.
The girls dart in and out the crevices in the barn. Through the cracks, their lanterns cast long shadows, and their voices, at once, quiet and gleeful, sustain us. They too, run, impervious to the early evening chill. Their legs are sturdy and quick, rhythmic and agile. Their hair in tangles drape their necks and backs, their knees stained by the dark soil and the green grass.
We sit and watch our children. We are proud. Their friendship, divined long before their birth, has taken root.
January 18, 2010