The veneer of giggling and high school posturing has fallen away from the memory and I am left with the pure swish of motion through the darkness. I remember the sprinklers chuffing over the grass, the fine spray in the air. There were stars.
Last night, after I went to bed early, insomnia attacked me. I put on my jeans and went for a walk. I didn’t have a goal in mind. I was so tired that I shuffled like an old woman. I remembered, halfway around the block, that I now live close to an elementary school with swings.
The bark of the playground threatened my flip-flopped feet. I chose the swing highest from the ground. As I pumped my legs, the chains creaked, first the right side, then the left. I saw the sky swirled with cloud.
A car pulled up. A girl got out and hopped the short fence instead of bothering to go around to the gate. She chose a swing several down from mine and called out to her friends. In her case, there were boys involved and the swings were just a meeting place on the way to somewhere else, somewhere less dark, somewhere full of laughter and music.
I left them to make their own memories.