On a Boardwalk By the Sea

Once, on a boardwalk by the sea, there was a kid with a dollar.

The kid tied clear fishing wire to the dollar. He stuck the dollar between the boardwalk’s slats. He ran the fishing wire under the boardwalk back to a bench. He sat on the bench. He watched the boardwalk.

The boardwalk was used by many people who came from the city. In the city, these people had serious faces. They went to serious places to make deals, news, and things happen. They walked fast. They believed in hard work.

On the boardwalk by the sea, they wore their serious faces and walked their fast walks, past the sun hitting the sea and the sea hitting the sand and the sand sparkling like there might have been magic in it.

But one man saw the dollar between the boardwalk slats. He paused. Then he reached towards it. The dollar vanished. Only to reappear at the bare feet of the kid, who was laughing. A big, delighted laugh like he still – as the poets say – believed in mischief.

The man who had reached for the dollar looked up at the kid and the sun and the sea and the sand sparkling. And then the man laughed a big, delighted laugh, too. Like this had all reminded him that mischief was something to believe in.

So on this boardwalk by the sea, there was a kid who hadn’t left behind his sense of play. And with a dollar and some fishing wire, he let others know they didn’t have to either.

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