The Wish Twin (2014)
Time is sticky, and clocks are tick-tock, tricky. The shortest hand on a clock is the longest amount of time, and the longest hand is the shortest amount of time. I think time is backwards, because tomorrow’s feel like forever but yesterday’s feel like they just flew by. Like a trip, time always seems longer on the way going somewhere then on the way coming back home. I come into everything backwards, because counting down seems much faster than counting up. My parents say I’m impatient, but adults never understand how hard it is to wait. When I read a story I always read the last page first, to make sure the endings not too sad. Then I go back to the beginning and begin the story again. In-between the beginning and the ending is where a story gets interesting. Just like a day. If a day was just waking up and going to sleep, it wouldn’t be very much of a day. What happens in-between, the place between the beginning and the end, is what makes anything interesting. I had the most interesting day when I got lost in Nowhere counting back from my birthday before. I found the Eighth Day of the week hidden there. In Nowhere. The Eighth Day, is the day the week forgot. It’s the day time stops.
I had to go far away to find my courage one day. It was about to be my birthday, and ‘about to be’ days should always be brave. My mother wrapped home around Rover’s collar, so she could fetch us both back before dark. She kissed me three times and told Rover to take good care of her ‘little butterfly.’ Rover and I were going on a day before my birthday, birthday adventure. Mom knows how hard it is for me to wait. She told me if I went to the edge of the farthest place I’ve ever gone, I would find my birthday surprise hidden there. Rover and I played turn-left, turn-right across all the meadows we could find, and climbed over every fence we could climb. Until we came to the last one. It was on the edge of the farthest place I’ve ever gone. Standing there was a fence so high it blocked the sky, and so wide it felt as long as forever. Hanging on the fence was a strange crooked sign. It read Nowhere. Nowhere? What a mysterious place that must be.
I thought If something special was hidden anywhere in the world, it must be hidden in nowhere. It’s the perfect hiding spot. No one would ever think to look for anything in Nowhere, so my birthday surprise must hidden there. But how could we get in, into Nowhere? The fence was too tall to climb and looking up at it, looking down on me, made me feel too small. What if I made a wish? It was almost my birthday after all. Maybe I could make a wish the birthday day before?
I closed my eyes and wished, I wish I could fly.
I opened my eyes and tried to fly over the fence that was too tall, and fell back down to the ground, as I watched my birthday wish fly right by. What a wasted wish that was, thinking I could grow wings and fly. That wasn’t a very good wish. I should have thought my wish before I wished it. Wasting my wish made me start to leak, then my leak turned into a cry. I tried to take my wish back, knowing if I hadn’t wished it, the wish wouldn’t have not come true. The harder I tried, the harder I cried. Rover knew what to do. Rover’s a Wonderdog because she always knows what to do. She licked all the tears from my face and started digging. My Wonderdog dug a hole right under the fence so high I couldn’t climb. Then I crawled down in it, through the tunnel, just below the strange crooked sign. I followed her tail wig-wagging down, down, down and we came out the other side in a field of butterflies. Hidden there in Nowhere, was the day before my birthday, birthday surprise.
In the corner of the field full of butterflies, abandoned by a red barn with half its roof gone, I saw a very sad looking biplane with his back turned to me.
He didn’t know I could see him, hiding his face in-between the Milkweed plants and the Queen Anne’s Lace. Rover and I walked around to his front and saw one of his wings was gone.
He looked embarrassed that I saw him there. His frame blushed red with rust. I walked over to say Hello. I didn’t think my words before I said them. I forgot to say “Hello,” first, and went straight to the end of my thought instead.
“You look sad and all alone,” I said
The biplane didn’t answer, probably because I wasn’t very nice. Saying your last thought first, isn’t always polite. So I went back to the beginning, after the end of my sentence again. I started with “I’m sorry,” so I wouldn’t have to say “I’m sorry,” again at the end.
“I’m sorry. I should have said Hello first. Hello, are you my birthday surprise? I picked flowers for you.”
I could hear the biplane thinking. “She can’t hear me. No one can.”
“I can hear you, I can hear you thinking.” I said. “You can talk to me, I’m your friend.”
I talk to all sorts of things and most of them talk back. My parents call them imaginary friends, but they’re not really imaginary. What’s imaginary is that I imagine they’re my friends. They become un-imaginary friends when they talk back to me. It’s fun to think what un-imaginary friends thoughts might be. I meet some of my best friends thoughts thinking that way. Milkweed Pods are my favorite friends in the meadow. I put them on my fingers and they repeat everything I say. They’re my puppet friends. They always say, “I love you,” back. Un-imaginary friends are the best friends that way, because they often say the things real friends are afraid to say.
The biplane still wasn’t talking to me. He must be shy. So I thought my words before I said them. I thought, what is the nicest thing I could ever say to a friend, that would never need an “I’m sorry,” at the end?
“I love you.” Saying I love you first, felt very smart and very brave.
The biplane said nothing back
“I heard you saying nothing. Nothing’s not a very nice thing to say after I was very smart and very brave.”
“Planes aren’t nice they’re honest. Sometimes nothing is the best thing to say.” The biplane was finally talking to me.
“Nothing doesn’t say anything!”
“Nothing says a lot, It just doesn’t use many words to say it.” The biplane replied back to me.
The biplane thought he was being very smart. I can be very smart too.
“I use a lot of words, I love words. Words are real they never go away. You have to choose carefully the words you choose to say. Little ones are the best. They mean a lot. Some people like to stand on top of big words to make themselves feel tall. I like being small, just not too small. Small words mean the most after all. Small words like I, us, and we give me some of my biggest thoughts. The word I stands alone, like an Island. Adding an S makes it meaningless. I’s? But take a U and add an S, and it becomes much more than before. With U there, U becomes more, it becomes Us. You are the U in us. Without the U there next to me I don’t mean a thing. I stands alone on an Island of me. Just like I’s, adding an S to me, makes me more meaningless. Me’s? But if you add I and me together, it equals us. Me plus us equals we. Without me there is no we. Without U there is no us. Rover and me makes us, with you, you could make us we.”
The biplane stopped talking to me. I used too many words again. When I use too many words no one else can fit their words in. My parents say I talk too much. They tell me I need to think about the words I say, before I say them. I think unthinking my words is better. Because when I unthink, I say what I feel, and what I feel is what I really wanted to say. I think adults don’t say what they feel, they’ve forgotten how to be honest that way.
I asked Rover, “What do you do when you want someone to start talking to you?” She answered by tilting her head and raising your ears, wearing a question mark on her face. “Rover you’re so smart,” I said as I petted her head.
If I want someone to talk back to me, maybe it’s best to start by asking a question about them?
“What’s your name?”
“I don’t have one,” the biplane replied.
“Then I’ll name you.”
“No? That’s not very polite, you should say no thank you.”
“Planes aren’t polite their honest.
“Being polite is being kind, please say no thank you.”
“Being honest is being kind. Please no name. No name, thank you.”
“Your welcome. Why can’t I name you?”
“Why do people need to name things?”
“So they can love you back. You name things you love. If I just say, “I love you.” Rover doesn’t know I’m talking to her. When I say “I love you Rover,” see how her tail wags? She’s telling me she loves me back. Dogs say I love you back with their tails.
“I don’t want to love someone back. I only love today.”
“Why do you only love today?” I asked.
“Planes love today because today is the day they will fly.”
“I wished I could fly today. I thought I had wasted my wish, but maybe that wasn’t true because you’re a plane, maybe I could fly with you?”
“Planes don’t make wishes, only people do. People are too busy remembering yesterday or wishing for tomorrow, they’ve forgotten today.”
“You’ve never made a wish?”
Then I remembered what I had forgotten to remember again. My Wish Twin. I was in such a hurry to find a way into Nowhere I forgot to give a wish to my Wish Twin. When you make a wish you need to make two, then give one away. Everyone has a Wish Twin. Somewhere there is someone who has the same wish as you.
“I made one wish today, that means I still have one more. I can give it to you.”
The biplane looked away. His fabric was all dirty and torn, with one wing leaning against the barn with half its roof gone. I knew he didn’t believe in wishes anymore.
“Wishes are for children, planes need to believe they can fly. I’ve been alone in this field for so long, I’ve forgotten how to believe. So I cant fly”
Then the biplane remembered to be polite and added it at the end. “Please no wish. No wish, thank you.”
“You’re welcome. Thank you for being polite, but you’re wrong.” I love it when I’m wrong, because it helps me find out when I’m right. “Tell me if I’m wrong or right, believing never ends, it can be forgotten and remembered again. Believing begins with the words I AM. Small words mean the most after all. When you start a thought with I AM, anything is possible at the end. Starting a thought with AM I? Is like starting a thought with “I can’t.” A thought that begins by saying, “I AM,” makes your thought end with, “I CAN.”
The shy biplane didn’t reply, but his thought was thinking – I can’t fly. He did smile back at me, and in his shy smile I saw what he might be, if I helped him believe.
“I’ll help you. I’m really good at remembering what I’ve forgotten to remember again.” To remember what you forgot, you have to go backwards. You start with forgetting what you remember. “If you forget that you’ve forgotten how to believe, you would remember how to believe you could fly again.” Believing is knowing that all sorts of things you’ve forgotten can be remembered again.
“I’ll give you my wish, and you can wish you could fly too.”
The biplane was thinking, “If I don’t believe I can fly, what good would a wish do?”
He didn’t understand wishing at all. Wishes are just shy, they need a little help from believing before they can come true. “I could believe for you.” I said. Adult’s wish once then give up. They think their wish was too good to come true. “You need to need a wish. If you just want a wish, it will never find its way to you. Believing you need a wish makes the wish feel good. When you make a wish feel good, it makes the wish want to find you. Wishes that feel good and true, are never too good to come true. Until you forget you couldn’t remember how to believe, I’ll believe enough for two.”
I used too many words and the biplane stopped talking again. I think I need to try asking him another question.
“Would you be my plane and teach me how to fly?”
“Planes don’t belong to anyone. Planes have caretakers. We live longer than people. People are the only ones who think they can own things.”
“Caretaker, that’s a nice word. It’s easy to say because it sounds like it spells.” Rover sat on my foot and leaned on my leg. Rover’s a Wonderdog, she always knows what to do. I went over to the biplane, and sat on his wheel and put my head on his leg and asked him again. “Please be my plane. If you would teach me how to fly, I would be the very best caretaker of you.”
“All children know how to fly, it’s only after they grow up that they forget. It’s been so long even if I believed I could fly I couldn’t. I’m broken.”
“You’re not broken you’re just kind of a mess. How can I help you? I said.
“Restore me. Thank you. Please.”
“How do you restore something?”
“Oh no, I’m not very patient.” Adults always tell children to be patient. it’s such a very hard word to hear, it doesn’t spell like it sounds. “How long would I have to patient? I don’t wait very well.”
“Planes don’t mind waiting. Planes live much longer than people, so time is different for us. I used to teach children how to fly, but a caretaker bought me and we went to work flying over his crops. Then he decided he didn’t need me anymore. He left me here in Nowhere, behind the barn. He never came back to fly me again. I waited for fifty years for my caretaker to come back. Believing each day I would fly and each night when he didn’t return, I slowly broke apart, piece by piece. I can’t be restored until I believe I can fly again, and I don’t know how long it would take for me to believe. So you’ll will have to wait to fly with me.” .
“How long would I have to wait? What day will you be done?
“The day before I’m done.” The biplane replied.
“You think your being funny again, but your not. What day will you be done? Please, it’s very hard to wait.”
“On the eighth day of this week.”
“The eighth day? There’s only seven days in a week. Your wrong, there is no eighth day?”
“I’m right, you’re wrong. There is an eighth day.” The biplane thought back. “It’s the day the week forgot. That’s the day time stops and patience begins. That’s the day planes know, and people forgot.”
“The eighth day sounds like a very long day?”
“The eighth day can last longer than your lifetime but feels like it flew by when it comes. You never know when it’s about to begin, and you never know when it’s about to end. The Eighth Day starts with the first movement of the red hands on my magic Eight Day Clock.”
The biplane thought I should climb in his backseat and see for myself. There on the left, hiding in the corner, was a very small clock with an extra set of very red hands. It must be a magic clock, because small things mean the most after all. If I was going to hide magic in something, I would hide magic in something very small. Below the small clock was a knob and a place for two very small keys. One of the keys was gone.
“The biplane was thinking don’t wind the clock. I forgot how to believe I can fly, and I’ve lost one of the keys. Don’t wind the clock.” He forgot to think please, he has a hard time remembering to be polite. So I turned the knob and the hands on the clock started to move. I always do the things adults are thinking I shouldn’t do. But the red hands didn’t move, they stood still.
“How do I make the red hands move?” I said.
“The day planes are restored is the day time stops and the hands start to move. To start the Eighth Day, I need the other key.”
“Tell me a story about the Eighth Day and your magic Eight Day clock please.”
“Insert two keys. Time stops. Eighth Day begins. I’m restored. The end.”
The biplane thought he was being very funny again. “I hear you thinking your funny again, but now you’re really not. That’ s not a very interesting story, go back to the beginning please, and start it over again. Tell me a story about the Eighth Day and use lots of words.”
“The eighth day starts just before the beginning and never ends,” the biplane began. “Somewhere between today and tomorrow, in Nowhere, hidden in a magic Eight Day clock. An Eight Day clock looks like any other clock people use to keep time, but it has an extra set of red hands. Only a caretaker can wind it. You wind it up and it counts time down to the end. After the seventh day the clock runs out of time and waits to be wound back up, to start counting back down again. If planes measured their lives like people, watching a clock winding up and down everyday, we wouldn’t want to live that way. Planes live forever so time is different for us. Planes only count the minutes they fly. Every minute you fly adds to your life, so planes never die. We are rebuilt and restored again and again. The amount of time it takes to restore a plane can be very long. Once restoration starts there is no telling when it will be done, so restoration’s need extra patience to get planes and their caretakers through to the end. That’s where the Eighth Day comes in. That’s the day planes remember, and people forgot. The Eighth Day is where all the extra patience in the world is kept from all the minutes adults have forgotten to take. Adults are so busy measuring their life by work weeks and weekends, counting time between their beginning’s and end’s, they’ve forgotten about all the minutes they forgot to take time for. Minutes spent wondering what the clouds smell like, why the wind makes the grass wave back to you? Minutes spent quietly sitting with friends. Things planes and children always take the time to do. The Eighth Day starts when you put in the two keys and you believe there is all the time in the world waiting for you. Then time stops and the Eighth Day begins. Even if I could believe again, I’ve lost the second key.”
“I can look for the key, I’m really good at finding things. I lose everything including myself all the time. It’s good to get lost, if you never got lost how could you ever find found?” I said. My parents move homes all the time, so I’m used to being lost. They hide home so we can learn to find it again anywhere. Home isn’t home because of what it looks like, home is home because of what it feels like. Home is so soft, you want to stay forever and it’s so hard, its hard to ever go away. Home feels like mittens and being wrapped up in sweaters. You stub your toe there a lot because it’s very, very solid, but it feels always warm and toasty, so home makes your nose itch. Once you learn to feel what home feels like, you can find your way home anywhere. Rover always feels like home to me, so I never feel homesick when I’m with her.
Rover started to bark. She’s a Wonderdog because she always remembers what I forget to do. I had forgotten what I was supposed to remember again. “I promised Mom we’d be home before dark. It’s getting dark and we have to be back before my before-birthday dinner tonight. I get my second favorite thing to eat. I have to go Buddy. Look I just named you. Buddy’s the best name ever. I’ll be back tomorrow on my Birthday and look for your key. Tomorrow’s the day both our wishes will come true. You’re my Wish Twin. I believe I AM going to fly tomorrow, and I believe I AM going to fly tomorrow, for you too.”
I climbed out of his backseat and Buddy starting thinking very seriously. Adults do that when they want to tell you something you don’t know is true, but they do.
“Listen to me. Go straight home, go straight through the meadow. No turning left or turning right. Follow Rover back to the tunnel just below the crooked sign. Nowhere is no place for children after dark. Everything right in Nowhere by day, becomes wrong at night.”
“Listen to me. On your way through the meadow stay out of the trees. There’s burble there. Burble is wind that’s lost its way. It doesn’t know what to do, it’s confused. Burble starts to listen to what the trees say instead of what the wind knows is true. Burble in the trees can be very dangerous to you.”
“Listen to me. Beware the slope, don’t go there. Once you start down the slope you can’t stop. If the meadow drops off put on your breaks and stop straight ahead. Then take off and run the other way. Never listen to what the slope has to say.”
“Listen to me go straight through the meadow and get out of Nowhere before dark. Nowhere is no place for gentle things. There are hunter’s in Nowhere at night. Thank you. Please.”
I heard Buddy thinking she won’t be back.
“I promise I will be back, Buddy I won’t leave you alone. I love you Buddy, thank you for being my friend.” I said. He didn’t know I could see his tail wagging back at me.
Rover and I ran straight through the meadow, back towards the fence with the crooked sign. Rover leading the way because she is a Wonderdog, and Wonderdogs always know their way home. Nowhere was such a beautiful place, it was very hard to leave. The fireflies were coming out and winked in the grass, as the butterflies waved the day goodnight. The sunset’s stare made the night before my birthday sparkle, and the light tasted like the color yellow melting in my mouth. Nowhere started to glow. I stopped and wondered. Did I see the meadow starting to grow? It was. The meadow was growing taller than my knees. Now I’ll never find Buddy’s key. I raced the grass growing up around me to the tunnel, and jumped inside.
“I win. Olly olly in come free!”
I could see Rovers tail wig-wagging ahead of me, just coming out the other side of the tunnel. Then a gunshot shouted out from the end of the tunnel. It was as loud as a lifetime and dug its way back down the tunnel to me. The shot shot through the day and cracked the day in two, and turned the yellow light into night. Suddenly the tunnel was dark and tasted like the color blue. Like the U in blue had frozen in my mouth, so I froze too. I laid on the floor of the tunnel and waited for Rover’s tail to come back to me, but it was gone. Everything right was suddenly wrong. Without Rover the Wonderdog, I didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t go down the tunnel so I backed backwards, back into Nowhere instead. The grass in Nowhere had grown as high as my chin and I couldn’t see Buddy or the barn with half its roof gone.
“Help me Buddy, Rover’s gone, I can’t find her tail anywhere. Without Rover I cant find my way home,” I cried.
The burble in the tree’s heard me cry and called, “Come over here, come over here.” The slope said, “No go this way, go this way.”
I stood on my toes in the grass that had now grown as high as my eyes, and yelled again, “Help me Buddy, I’m lost. Buddy, I need you.”
I heard Buddy thinking so far away.
“Listen to me. Stay where you are, hide in the grass. The meadow is growing to hide you. Don’t listen to them. Listen to me. I’m sending you friends.”
I sat down in the grass and hid my face in-between the Milkweed Pods and the Queen Annes Lace. Then I saw the Queen Annes Lace turn and smile at me. The Queen Ann’s Lace had ladies faces, and the ladies faces started talking to me.
“There, there baby girl, don’t be afraid. We’ve made a quilt for you and wove us together with dandelion chains. Wrap us around you, you sit right here on our laps,” they sweetly said. “There, there baby girl, don’t be afraid. We have a present we’ve been keeping for you. A beautiful gold key for your birthday. There, there baby girl. You stay here as long as you like. We’ll protect you.”
Then the Milkweed Pods puppeted back to me, “We’ll protect you, we’ll protect you too.”
Hanging in the Queen Annes Lace on a bronze chain was a small gold key. I reached for the key and a pair of big shining eyes blinked three times back at me.
Then two eyes became four, and four became six. Three spiders each with eight giant legs raised up, up, up out of the grass. Each eight legs with two eyes glowing back at me.
“I’m afraid of spiders, please don’t bite me. I’m too small to hurt you,” I said.
“We would never bite you, we’re Daddy Longlegs, Harvestmen, barely related to spiders you see. We never hurt anyone, we don’t even have fangs to bite,” the closest one said. “Gentle creatures are often misjudged when people believe only what they think they see. We’re here to help you, we’re your friends. We’ll carry you there. Don’t worry, no one can hurt you with us, people are afraid of spiders everywhere.
Don’t forget your key.”
The Daddy Longlegs carried me back through the meadow on my quilt of Queen Annes Lace, back to Buddy and tucked me in his backseat. I started to leak, then my leak turned into a cry.
“Buddy I’m scared of the dark and Rovers run away,” I said.
Now I’ll never find home and tomorrow’s my birthday. The Queen Anne’s Lace gave me a key for my birthday, is it for you?”
Buddy called all the lighting bugs from the meadow to light up the night and thought it was time to put the key in his clock and give it a try. Magic was about to happen just for me. I needed to be very patient and believe. It was about to be the eighth day. He had remembered how to believe.
“Buddy, how did you remember how to believe?”
“I remembered how to believe when you said you needed me. A wish needs to be needed to come true, planes need to be needed too.”
I watched the clock in Buddy’s backseat, glowing in the light of the fireflies tails, and waited for the red hands to move. Trying to not close my eyes and fall asleep, but trying to stay awake makes you very sleepy.
“Buddy tell me a story so I can stay awake with you.”
“I will do that.” Then Buddy thought, “Once upon a time. The End.”
He thought he was being funny again, and he was. We both laughed at him. A funny story is always better than a story that’s too sad.
“Buddy please tell it again, but this time use lots of beautiful words.”
Buddy started rethinking his story from the beginning again…
“The sky loves you so much it sends the clouds down to the ground at night to collect all the tears you’ve cried here. Then the clouds take them up to the sky to be dried. Clouds hold millions of tiny tears inside. Clouds carry all the tears of sadness and gladness, which are both good – everyone needs a good cry. Good tears make the white fluffy clouds that stretch and yawn across the sky. They’re the clouds you see floating by that remind you of your house, or your dog, or favorite Uncle Steve.
Those clouds smell like chalk, because they hold your imagination for you as long as they can, until you grow up and become too old to look up at them. The sky still loves you long after you’ve grown up, but sends stronger clouds down to collect the tears of adults. Adults tears change when they grow up, adults start to cry tears of shame. Tears of shame are the only bad tears to cry. Tears of shame hold all the could’ve’s, the would’ve’s, all of the might’ve been’s that grown up’s hold inside.
Those tears can’t be ever be dried, so they are taken up to be cleaned in the sky.
Clouds that clean the tears of shame are dark inside, and the darkest clouds are the Giants of the sky. They’re the ones you see towering and glowering, bubbling and boiling, scrubbing shame out harder and higher. Lighting and hailing out all the bad. The Giants in the sky aren’t terrible, they’re just tired. After all it’s a giant job cleaning up all the shame in the world. When the Giants are done they go to sleep, resting in the sky, and the Giant clouds become gentle again. Once all the tears of shame are scrubbed clean, the sky sends the tears back down as rain, to grow the garden of children.”
“I love you, Buddy. Thank you for being my friend,” I said as I kissed him.
Watching the red hands on the clock, waiting for them to move I tried to stay awake and believe. Sometime in-between my yawn and the last blinks of my eyes, time stopped. I thought I saw the red hands on the clock move, but I fell asleep instead. It is very hard to stay awake.I didn’t hear Buddy thinking, “Goodnight Butterfly, I love you too.”
I had the most wonderful dream that night tucked in Buddy’s backseat. Nowhere is such a mysterious place. I think it was a dream, but I can’t be sure? I dreamt that wild men blew through the meadow with wind and blue flames in their hair, wearing boots as tall as their knees.
They pulled the wind out of their hair and wrapped it around the barn like a scarf, then blew the flame across the beams to break the barn apart. With hands as big as hams, they picked up the wood and wove it into Buddy’s wings. Then laid Barnstormers leather coats on his seats, and took the shirts off their backs to patch his fabric with their sleeves. They laughed so loud it shook the sky and poured gas from their flasks into Buddy until he glowed bright blue. The wild men wrapped the wind around their necks again and blew back across the meadow, disappearing over the moon. In my dream Buddy looked like he was brand new. I think all dreams might be real. Maybe Nowhere is where all dreams are true?
I opened my eyes and saw the barn was gone. Buddy was sitting in the meadow covered in sunlight. He was brand new!
“Buddy you’re so beautiful,” I said. “Are you restored? I tried to stay awake and believe with you, but I fell asleep. Did our wishes come true?
“Happy Birthday. Do you want to start my engine? If we fly today, it will be my Birthday too.”
“Buddy, I need to leave now. I have to find home, but Rovers not here so I can’t feel it or find it alone. I need you.”
“We’ll go flying and you can look for home,” Buddy thought. You remember what it feels like, so you’ll know when it’s nearby. Don’t worry, I’ll take good care of you.”
“I’m scared Buddy. You’re so big and blind. I can’t see in front of you. I don’t know if I am too small to fly.
“You’re not too small, remember small things mean the most after all. All children know how to fly. I believe you can fly, and it’s my turn to believe enough for two. It’s easy, I’ll teach you.”
Buddy’s engine started on the first try and I yelled, “Yahoo! Happy birthday to us. Buddy I love you.” I put my hands out the side of his cockpit and waved goodbye to the Milkweed Pods and the Queen Anne’s Lace as we taxied out through the meadow grass in Nowhere. Two best friends about to go on our first flight together. Right before we took off, I heard Buddy thinking, “I love you back. Butterfly, I love you too.”
If you read the last page first, then I’ll know you’re impatient like me. I read the the last page of stories first too, to make sure the ending’s not to sad. I won’t make you wait, because waiting is hard. Don’t worry my story ends happily.
When I grew up I reached a day on the clock where adults start counting time backwards towards the end. As I looked back at my fifty years counting up, I asked myself two questions. “What was the best thing and the worst thing you can remember?” If you play the question game you don’t get to think your answer, you have to say the first thing that pops into your head. If you think your thoughts first, you’ll just say what you think others want you to say, not what you know in true instead. So I answered myself immediately. Best thing was: I learned how to fly and became a pilot. The worst thing was: a mean man shot my dog Rover when I was seven years old. After all the worst things adults lives hold; that children should not yet understand. The fact that I remembered a mean man shooting my dog Rover as my worst thing, made me feel very young again. In the years counting up to the time you start growing young, it is easy to forget that the worst thing that can happen to anyone is losing their first best friend. Adults worry about losing so many things, because adults think they get to own everything, but that’s the best part of a best friend. No one can own a friend. Friends choose you and you choose them. That’s why you should always be kind and say, “Thank you for being my friend,” and “I love you,” to them.
When you grow younger, you get to choose to remember any of your memories just as you like. I remembered I had remembered wrong. It’s good to be wrong, it helps you know when you’re right. The mean man who I thought shot my dog Rover didn’t. He wasn’t a very good shot. Rover was waiting at home for me.
Now you know the end of my story isn’t sad, you can begin at THE END and work your way back, it will go much faster that way. You can always go backwards, and start any story at the beginning again.
The Wish Twin
by Sarah Wilson
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