He was telling me before bed,”You know what I like? I like the kind of floaty that you put around your arm, not the one you wear on your chest. That’s what I want to wear for my birthday party.”
“By then, I want to teach you how to swim without floaters.”
“No” he says with a little quiver in his voice.
“I think you can. I learned how to swim at your age.”
“Did your momma show you how?”
“No. My Halmee did.”
“Where is she?”
“She’s not here.”
“She died? She passed away?” He sounds mature.
“How old was she?”
“She was 94. She was here a long time.”
” But she didn’t make it to 100?”
“No. But I was happy for her. She was starting to hurt here and made room for someone else.”
“Does dying hurt?”
“I don’t know, I’ve never died before.”
“Does anyone know?”
“I think most of them are dead. You know what I heard from a wise man once?” Even in the dark I know he is staring at me with inquisitive round black eyes with a bright light piercing through, like the kind you see in Japanese anime animals.
“He said that we all know we will die one day. This is truth. And if we accept that as truth. Then just spend the rest of the time living it.”
Elijah is silent for some time. Then he says,”Can we live to be 200?”
“Maybe one day.”
He graduated from kindergarten today.


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