the first time i saw him,
he was shy, to say the least;
hiding behind ski goggles.
i was told he didn’t like
many people. but i knew
i’d win him over. i always do.
it wasn’t until about a week
later that he showed up again.
he was fixated on my older
brother but hey, who wouldn’t
be. he won a crab claw toy with
a dinosaur head on it. every time
he snapped it i would say “ouch,
my finger!” and he would giggle
uncontrollably. when garrett
did it it was only 10 times funnier.
garrett played games with him
for about 10 minutes of pretending
to be scared or hurt or whatever
the act was. kids love it when you
pretend that they’re in power.
i followed him, making sure he
didn’t have his 6th brownie.
finally, i pulled out all the stops.
first, we jumped like froggies.
his little hands would grab onto
two or three of my fingers and
i’d help him to jump at twice
the height he was normally
capable of. next, i spun him
until he looked like a drunk.
of course we raced. and
buckled pretend seat belts
and went to pretend panera.
the other counselors my age
worked hard around me, but
i felt no guilt as i played with
matisse. last, we found a mat
and rolled around. i called him
my little burrito and he called
me jordan. he liked the name so
i told him i didn’t mind. my brother
called today and told me that
matisse’s mom said he asks
about me all the time. matisse says
“i miss jordan, she doesn’t mind”