We were the crown princes, then, with an occasional princess, though that was more to maintain the peace. Our kingdom was a square block, and we dominion over all of our territory save the two minefields, well-marked, kept by the Strauss and Herlihy fiefdoms, who refused to pay homage to us, denied us our just due, and suffered such consequences as we could muster in the dark of a late October night. We four, Larry, Buddy, Sheldon and I roamed our kingdom, and one day, drunk with power and Nehi, scaled the border masquerading as a fence and entered the neighboring kingdom, cavorting until its army of one chased us away with a shout, “It’s a private school and you don’t belong here,” before hobbling back into the building he was far too black to enter save in uniform. We are old now, have long since abdicated our thrones and struggle only to retain our memories.
We arose from water, crawled forth and inhabited the land and claimed dominion and the land appeared to cede itself to us, knowing better and caring even less. We return to the water feel its pull but immerse ourselves only partially, willing to risk only half drowning, the land and air usually silent, knowingly laugh for they know that a fish out of water eventually drowns in a sea of air.