I remember being pocket sized and five, taking violent delight in the teacups at the fair, the chipped pastels merging with the beach huts lining the shore. The fair was held behind their stoic line, the faraway homes who betook wind and rain with a smile, and I always wondered if the goldfish bobbing in bags ever smelt the sea, ever tasted the salt between their gills. I wondered if they ever hoped to live beyond the two days they spent in the fishtank which returned to the shed for the remainder of the year to collect dust and lost time. They always looked so small and pocket sized like me when I was five so looking into that bag, all candyfloss-eyed, felt like looking in a mirror. I was looking at my own apathy in some, my fears in others and always one seemed struck dumb by an innocence I would eventually shrug off like snow. I was looking and wondering when and if life would ever change; if five turned into six and six into seriousness, into carrying a childhood like sand before a flood. I was wondering if I would always feel so small – so pocket sized and five.
Prose: © Kristiana Reed 2020
Photograph taken by me