"How long until you sleep, Bologna Princess?"
"I'll sleep in a lot of longs, Mommy, or maybe just a few."
She doesn't know it, but I don't mind. I'd stay up late to watch her sleep, wake early to breathe her caramel skin. Read her favorite book again and again.
She is three years of magic and music to my soul.
"What color are my eyes?" I ask.
"Purple," she laughs.
"Green," I say. I want her to always remember.
Her tin-foil crown sparkles. Her pink tutu and soft brown curls, painted gold by the sun, dance in the summer night.
"Can I have bologna? Just bologna," she says. I would give her the world on a plate if I could.
She fills her dad's lunch box with blocks, imagines he'll make a castle instead of eating. "And crayons do belong in high heels," she proudly declares.
Wise beyond her years, she pilots the middle perfectly, as if she's been there before.
She is centered, like the small freckle on her nose I kiss each night.
"Rest with me," she'll say, her eyes sweeter than melting chocolate.
She is a gift that keeps me present, accountable in times of confusion.
A kaleidoscope of joy
Her colors different from the rest
"Bologna Princess, I think you're an angel."
"Maybe, but I need to find my wings," she says, and gently drifts off to sleep.
And you will."