My sister and i looking for our brothers in a game of hide-and-go-seek. Photo by Ed Esposito
Once upon a time, there lived a princess. But that’s not me. I was a tomboy, picking worms from the earth and collecting ants for my plexiglass farm, complete with kelly-green John Deere tractor. The holes in the “farm” were too big and even the large black ants would stick their antennae out, feeling around for i don’t know what, before squishing their bulky bodies through the opening, finding freedom on the porch, the gateway to the world. Certainly, with this manufacturing flaw, the ant farm was not permitted in the house.
Once upon a time, there lived a princess. But that’s not me. I am a pyromaniac, who loves to make bonfires and grill out. I like the feel of the wood, the meticulous formation of newspaper and kindling. The precarious tent of branches raised up and burned down. I like to monitor the embers, adding more sticks. I like the dance of the fire, the feel of the heat, the snapping sounds of sap escaping wood. I like the sparks that jump from the flame and dissolve in the night sky, the moths that approach the light but run from the heat, the burnt remains that float heavenward, disappearing into the dark of the night.
Once upon a time, there lived a princess. But that’s not me. I am a sports fanatic. I am a die-hard fan. I scream at the refs and yell at the players. I scare the dog as I holler “Touchdown!” The kids tiptoe past the television screen only during commercial breaks for fear of the wrath of Momma if she misses a play. They know it’s not real anger, but the joke still runs its course each football season.
Once upon a time, there lived a princess. But that’s not me. I am t-shirt, shorts, and slip-on tennies. I am hair-pulled back ponytail. I am a no-make-up, no-jewelry kinda girl. I am a barefoot-in-the-yard, dancing-in-the-rain, off-key singer. I am a child of God. Jesus is my man. I read my Bible nightly. I cuss. I want a tattoo. I like it when the sun sets and lights my room on fire.