I walk past the carnival fountain, where the children used to play. I can still hear the echoes of laughter and the splash of wishes being tossed.

I think about the people who have come and gone, the coins tossed and the wishes made.

I always kept my coins in my pocket, my wishes to myself. I had this sense inside of me that wishes could change from day to day; I didn’t want to be cursed by the discarded wish coming true.

I sit alone by an outdoor cafe, I watch as the day passes and life is in motion. I’ve come back here in search of a friend, or perhaps some old photographs which serve as evidence of the person I once was.

I should have written it all down – the long summer days and those three o’clock mornings…

My teen-age companions, Danielle, Sara, Ava and Jasmine. The lovers Emily, Henriette, Jill and Zelda. Do they ever think about me? Or the feeling of our kisses, and how tightly we held each other’s hand?

Do they remember the sound of music softly playing in a car parked facing the ocean and the kissin’ and singin’ in the rain?

Those nights when tears fell and when we couldn’t stop, wouldn’t stop until it all ended all too soon?

On the street in a box by the trash, I see black n white photographs of people smiling, children racing and lovers embracing. A puzzle of memories with lots of missing pieces. I choose a couple and put them in my inside pocket.

I turn up Main street, but there is nothing to see other than the ghosts of faded memories, gated up shops and sun faded banners with colors turned from red and blue to black and white.

It’s noon time and the vendors are all around, not much to sell and not many people to sell to. It’s late April and the sun has arrived at last.

Is this a parable, an anecdote or perhaps a dream?

What are memories for if not to remind what we have been doing in our lives that have raced from child to senior walking with a cane?

I sit on the train heading out and I pull out the photographs from my pocket…I look out the window and that Carnival fountain winks at me. I smile, shed a tear and sigh.