Supper’s coming on.
Praying. Passing. The clinking of silverware. Grateful scraping on plates. Sliding of chairs.
Dishwater so hot it steams in the last rays of sun. Everyone helps.
Unbraiding of hair. Filling the wicker laundry basket with the grimy clothes of the day. Hot water from the tap, pipes clanking merrily. Hot, soapy water. Blue Coast soap. Kids clean and refreshed. Towels stiff from hanging on the line, smelling like heaven.
Little feet pattering, clean and fresh, to the living room. Fresh, clean clothes smelling like an afternoon breeze. Alex quizzes us; we all guess. The lights are off, the room blue. Final Jeopardy.
Pat and the ageless Vanna are next. We have pretzels in avocado colored melmac dishes. We guess the puzzles to see who can get them right first.
The evening is blue– that beautiful, hazy blue before evening. The air is thick with perfume– the grass, the earth, the honeysuckle. Our feet edge into the grass. We know we have already had our baths, but it beckons.
The first lightning bug, winking at us. We are off, our feet cool in the grass, running on velvet. We grab old Peter Pan peanut butter jars with holes poked in the lids. We catch little glowing orbs and collect them, racing around in the blue almost dark to see who has the most.
Air is so fresh it cools the lungs. The moon rises up, as if he wakened just to smile. Big, golden moon. The time of day when white clothes seem to glow and you can’t tell colors apart. Everything is blue.
Blue sky, blue moon, blue shadows. Blue twilight. Blue evening. Can air taste blue? It does, somehow.
Back into the house, our cheeks cool from the evening. Even though a moment ago with our wet hair the house felt cold, it now feels warm. We crowd inside, up the stairs to brush our teeth. The toothpaste has little blue crystals in it that crunch when you’re finished.
The windows are open. The moon winks. Blue evening seeps in. Lightning bugs sparkle from their jars on the table until tomorrow when we will let them out. We close our eyes. Blue shadows on the walls. Soft, evening breezes kissing the curtains.
Somewhere, the soft hoot of an owl. The world is quiet. Breathing settles into soft, rhythmic patterns. A soft breeze rustles the curtains. We hear the creek giggling.
And blue nightfall creeps over the world, until tomorrow.
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