10 June 2010

The green bike

Photographs of that summer showed her skinny and brown skinned with white-blonde lanky hair, her brother chubbier and darker; her on the swing and him on his green Chopper, a boys bike that she wasn't allowed.
The paddling pool, an ever present temptation that summer where the pavements scorched bare feet and the cheap plastic seats of their bicycles were too hot to touch, too hot for the pair of them to go riding and the breeze of their movement to cool them down.
Mum encouraging her outside, "You shouldn't be inside reading on a day like this!"
They did a jigsaw together, lying on the back lawn on their stomachs, a sheet of hardboard for the table, but the jigsaw was wrong for the weather; an ancient world map, the sun blindingly reflected off the silver edge pieces.
There were comparatively few photos in her mothers album, images were scarcer then, more expensive and more treasured than in this digital age. She was never so close to her brother as that summer, and the album was one of three from their shared childhood that her mother had bequeathed her, she picked up the phone to call him and call him closer.

Published (on real paper and everything!) in 6S The Green Bike anthology here
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