Something About Whales

I’d write to you about whales if I could, but the paint has run dry, and there’s no more left to color anyone’s pages. If we grab the tin watering can along with the tiny blue shovel, we can go and dig a hole to China behind the old stone fireplace next to the left of the crab apple tree. That way, if it’s time to go in and we’re still on the other side of the world, no one will be able to find us. I here that’s where all the color has gone.

But before we do that, I need to talk to you about whales. I need to tell you what I was going to draw for you before I looked into the paint can and saw that there was nothing left. Whales, well, they’re big, I know, but you shouldn’t be afraid of them. If you’re ever swimming in the middle of the ocean and you don’t know what to do, if you find a whale and look directly into one of its eyes with yours, then it’ll sing to you. How do I know? Because I did it last summer after I followed an owl back to the crabapple tree at 12:34 in the morning. The clock faces that come with illustrations to tell you what time it is should tell you what to do at certain times of the day. 12:34: follow the owl, then stare a blue whale in the eye.

Do you want to get an ice cream first before we do all of this? Take the blue, lime green, and pink-that’s-supposed-to-be-red sidewalk chalk and grip them all in your hand together until you have a big wad of color. Lean your body off the back of the wagon while I pull you and then leave the trail. Don’t worry. I won’t go too fast.

Last time you pulled me a bee came out of the wagon handle. Remember? The handle hit the driveway with a loud pang and you cradled your swollen finger in the palm of your unstung one. You cried a lot because it hurt, but remember how I took the daisies and dandelions and covered you until you couldn’t feel it anymore? By that time, the driveway was colored-in so that mom and dad knew where to find us at the end of the day, which, by the way, came too fast. We’d only just started to dig.

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