The Girls in the Yard

After the eggs and maybe cinnamon toast, as soon as we can get something pulled over our heads, we go outside. You, my little sister, follow me toward the barn, but I remember and say, “Let’s go back in and get it!”

At the foot of the bed, the E Encyclopedia opens to “Egyptians.” We get the shivers, crouch in the floor so they can’t look at us through the window. I see them out of the corner of my eye. You, too; we hide.

Leap-frog girl to girl into the hall, feeling every low angle of the house, we peel off the back porch, over work boots. Behind the tree is Ra. Hear the rustle, sun god in the leaves. Chills at the base. You look afraid. We feel the eye whirl in, cold air, the zoom of being known.

Cats belong to them, everywhere. Run to the oak tree! We squat down and look on all sides. You whisper, “out there at the road, they’re gone now.”

So we run to the flat rock in the yard. Wide open, our toes wet and crushing last violets. We are millionaires bashing rocks for quarts. All the jewels.

Tell me now. My name is Jade.

What do you want your name to be?


Many days it’s as though I’ve forgotten how to play, so I took a minute to remember it here thanks to Story Bleed, celebrating #GoGoDayofPlay. Can you tap back in, share a memory of play?
About me


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April 30, 2014
A Haines Home Companion: On Limbo
February 27, 2014
Poor and Powerless: My First Time to Speak
April 17, 2013
A Haines Home Companion: Wrestling in Spring
April 01, 2013
7 Thoughts on that Dark Good Day
March 29, 2013
Nameless Woman: An Abstraction on the Spirit
March 27, 2013
When I Don’t Feel God
March 11, 2013
invisible things: the mountains
March 06, 2012
a thousand red birds dancing
November 02, 2011


Reply September 26, 2011

ancient ehypt - happening here in my classroom today

    Reply September 26, 2011


      Reply September 26, 2011

      My Isaac LOVES Egyptians, too, which tickles me to death. I still get a thrill out of that culture, and they had cool eye makeup to boot.

Reply September 26, 2011

sisters are the best!

my emily and i would set up whole worlds of beanie baby civilization. the alligator lived with the flamingos and the platypus ran for mayor. she'd always get mad at me for skipping out on the "play." i just wanted to set up their worlds, i didn't want to get too involved in their lives :)

to play!

    Reply September 26, 2011

    Abby, I've always had a hard time playing with dolls or any toys for that matter. I would boss my barbies around or put cool outfits on them, but walking them around and stuff was so hard for me. Setting up a world, though? Yes.

    I can still enter into a story.This is good for me to remember, too, because I struggle so much with tapping into play time with my boys. I get so bored just how I did when I was little with girlfriends who liked to play dolls.

      Reply September 26, 2011

      I was the same. My brothers and I did lots of setting up worlds... I struggled so much when nanny-ing and babysitting to try to get into the "doll play." Thank you for the reminder because that is such a good point... I am going to have to keep that in mind as my mommy-roles change!

Reply September 26, 2011

Yes. Yes, Amber. I love your guts. Thanks for taking me back :)

Reply September 26, 2011

Wonderful - I was never much for playing with toys, but travelling back in time and creating imaginary worlds - I was so there. I wish it was a little more acceptable to do this in grown-up life, too. :)

Galit Breen
Reply September 26, 2011

Clever, creative, fun- all of the good stuff that childhood and sisterhood are made of, yes? Lovely.

Reply September 27, 2011

Egypt seems to have a hold on many imaginations. I wanted to study there. (The man paying for college said no.) My husband lived there and fell in love with it. Our sons have a fascination with it. In fact, our youngest granddaughter was almost named Isis. There is a collection of papyrus in the family. Hubby took me to see the King Tut exhibit in Dallas (the scaled down version in 2009) and the connection to the artifacts was unlike any museum experience I've ever had. What is it about that country? (and yes, I also think they had cool eye makeup and they are way more fun than Barbie)

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