The nights

autumn

After dinner a chair placed outside.
The stars twinkled brightly above.
In that rattan chair Dad sat,
while he smoked his cigarette.

The sound of crickets echoed in the dark.
We kids fidgeting while sitting on the porch.
Mum now and then scolding us.
No television or computers to interrupt.

From indoors the sound of the radio.
Softly mingling with the crickets.
Parents relaxing with the kids.
A father’s quality time spent at home.

The only disturbance, the mosquitoes.
Shielded by the dark, buzzing around.
The bites gotten, the swats heard,
Counting the kill, competing to win.

Fireflies bring magic to the night.
Like twinkling stars come down to play,
A bug lighted up like a light bulb.
We kids in awe at such wonder.

An occasional hoot among the treetops.
Brings mystery into the night.
A rustle in the bushes, a squawk heard.
Eyes like saucers, we peer into the darkness.

On nights of a full moon, legends told.
Huddled together, hearing of werewolf tales.
Fear building inside, yet excited.
Shadows come alive at every word.

Cultural festivals a fairyland at night.
A fun time joining the neighbourhood kids.
Carrying lanterns or launching fireworks,
Of parents hovering, of kids happy like larks.

I look back and cherish those days.
No album as clear as the mind.
Of family nights after dinner-time.
My parents the centre of my childhood.

By C.E. Pereira
(4-10-2014)

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