She smiled and in seconds, my heart was stolen. She held her hand out to me, beaming from ear to ear.
She had the cutest gap-toothed smile. Brown hair cascaded over her shoulders and a thick fringe hung over her forehead. Giggling, she took small steps towards me.
“I’m sorry.” She said, her voice clear as a bell.
“Do you know why you’re saying sorry?” I interrogated her as I bent down to get a close up of her beautiful eyes.
“I pushed him. It’s not nice to do so. I will give him my cupcake so he feels better.”
I sighed and a flicker of a laugh escaped my lips. How could one stay angry at a grade school student? It was an impossible feat.
She smiles, and I see the bags under her eyes. She has beautiful auburn hair. It shines, almost like a bright flame in the afternoon sun. It entrances me as it flows with the wind. I know she’s been crying. I can see it in the white of her eyes.
“It’s okay,” she says. “I’m okay.”
I wonder how many times she’d said that to the people in her life who had screwed her over one way or another.
She caught my eye like a shimmer in the desert sands.
Sandy brown hair in waves and rosy, frostbitten cheeks.
Tattered blankets were wrapped loosely around her body like a shawl
and she smiled, shivering.
She had seen many things–bloodshed, robbery, violence
with those bright blue eyes,
clear and pure.
Your gurgling laugh echoes in the hallway and your pattering footsteps follow next.They fall gently upon the wooden floorboards, like the soft drizzling rain. You laugh, and a smile tugs at the ends of my lips.
Mambu was your first attempt at calling me Mama. You got it right eventually, which made me feel bittersweet. Mambu will always, secretly, be my favorite word.
For you, learning the alphabet came as naturally as crawling. On the first day you were starting with Z; the very next day, you had it all down. Me and Dad thought you were an alphabet prodigy!
Your smile is like the sun, warm and bright. It is the best remedy for anything. Even if you did break my favorite porcelain flower pot. One smile and I decided I didn’t quite like it as much anymore.
“I’m leaving, Mom.”
The finality and determination in your voice squeezed my heart as hot tears rolled down my cheeks. We knew this day would come, a day when you went out to the world and learnt how to fend for yourself. A day when our little one would grow up and gain the independence we always hoped you would. But it was all too fast. How had all these years passed by in a blink of an eye?
“Okay,” my voice shook as the words formed in my mouth. It took all the courage and strength I had to keep my composure. I wanted to say no, you aren’t going anywhere; I wanted to keep you safe and sound for as long as I could.
“I love you Mom.”
I know little one, I love you too.
Your eyelids flutter and I am trapped by that bright hazel gaze. I freeze, like a deer caught in headlights.
They are beautiful.
They twinkle whenever there’s a laugh. It’s like an addiction, and I can’t seem to look away. My world swerves and bewitched, I watch as it plays in slow-motion.
My heart skips a beat too many as I fall,
slowly, into oblivion.