1. The Section wife from next door comes into our house . She always follows the perimeter of the room - her steps tentative . She speaks so quietly , almost a whisper , like everything she has to say is a secret . Her eyes show fear and are wide open , constantly darting over her shoulder - like a deer caught in the headlights , danger imminent . When my Dad walks in and says hello she draws her right shoulder up and cowers towards the wall. Mum looks at Dad and he leaves the room .
She wants Mum to explain a letter she received . She wants Mum to answer it . She wrings her hands . She keeps looking out the window for someone . She's worried...scared ...have to hurry . I go to the window to watch . I don't know what for , but it's important that I watch . I catch her fear .
2. Lily , the girl next door is outside . This is exciting to me . Seeing Lily is a rare occurence . Lily is older than me . She always wears a bonnet- almost like a baby bonnet . She is happy that I came over . I see her eyes sparkle . She signals me to come inside . We rush into the kitchen. There is a pile of clean laundry on the table to be folded . Lily quickly grabs a facecloth and tells me " Watch! " She folds the face cloth into a shape using opposite corners and demonstrates its value as a clutch purse .
I am fascinated and extremely happy that she showed me how to do it . Just as quickly and quietly she rushes me outside and tells me to go home . I run home and demonstrate my new skill to Mum . " Lily showed me " I announce . " Always play outside . Never go into Lily's house . If her Dad comes home , you run home right away ," announces Mum .
3. I see the boys , Lily's brothers playing in the front yard . They are laughing and shooting arrows into the air with a bow . Sis and I are laughing with them . Mum calls for us to "Stay on our side . "
Lily's mother calls timidly to the boys . I can't hear what she says . The older boy says something back to her . I don't understand it ...but it sounds very bad . Their mother stands quietly in the doorway . The big boy shoots the arrow high into the air , out of my sight . It comes down . Everyone is watching for it . The arrow comes right down in the older boy's face . Mum runs to help Lily's Mother with the boy . She 'shoos' us into the house . Sis takes my hand and we run . I am puzzled and scared .
4. Dad is walking up the hill from work . Lily's father walks home ,too . I call " Hi!" . He keeps his head down . He says nothing . He doesn't see me . I forget about him and run with Sis to hug Dad . Sis carries Dad's lunch pail . He holds our hands and whistles a tune . Mum is waiting by the house .