Watermelon Juice

The slice of watermelon was cold and as heavy as a kitten.
It made my thoughts giggle, but my mouth just smiled.
Daddy asked if I’d like some salt and I nodded.
He put his hand over mine and tilted the slice this way and that,
Shaking out a storm of white all over.
My brothers had their slices and were outside.
Paul had taken Mommy’s wire flowerbed fencing
and made a circle with it in the yard.
Peter was sitting in it with him,
The juice from his slice already running down his chin.
I stepped in the circle and sat facing them.
We all leaned in so the juice would drip on the grass.
Our heads nearly touched.
When Paul needed to spit the seeds,
He would lean back and turn his head,
Spitting them like a gun firing a bullet.
Peter tried to spit, too.
But the seeds tumbled down his chin in a gob of slobber.
I didn’t like how the seeds felt in my mouth,
So I knocked them loose with my fingers.
They fell in the tiny patch of grass in the middle of us.
I wondered if they would grow.
Before we even slurped halfway down to the rind
Juice was running down our necks and bare chests.
My legs and arms were sticky, too.
We scraped the last bit of pink with our teeth,
And stood together to race to the edge of the woods
Where scraps were thrown.
We tried to hurl our rind the farthest into the woods.
Paul always won and Peter never got his out of the yard.
This time I laughed out loud.
We all did.
Paul picked up the water hose and squirted himself off,
Then he aimed the stream of water at us.
We giggled and stomped as he sprayed our feet,
And put our hands up and turned our heads away
When he aimed for our faces.
Eventually we were clean.
We dried off and Mommy said
It was time to put my shirt back on.
But I wanted my shirt off like Paul.
Underneath, I didn’t see any difference,
Not one bit.
But I put my shirt on anyway.


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