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Memories In the Backyard This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

A few blocks away from the beach, a corner house stands a little too close to the tree out front. It is a rustic red and brown color, same as the pathway, but a significant part of the path has cracked and chipped under the sun and rain. The pathway leads to a small backyard—the ground fresh with a new layer of sod, where various plants live a short life.

Pine needles fall slowly from the towering tree and are so green that it seems as though it is summer when it is truly the midst of autumn. Smoke pours from the chimney only to disperse in the night air. The tiny black cinders are disseminated along the roof leaving visible only the skinny trail that the lizards leave when scurrying along the roof, as if no one has been there in years.

There is a concrete archway in the front of the house which frames the door like a masterpiece being showcased. This door has been worn creaky by those who have entered and exited countless times. I remember coming home one day and spending almost twenty minutes trying to get it open.

I remember living here like it was yesterday. I can still see the five-year-old me waving to my father from inside the window while he was mowing the lawn. I remember coloring this sidewalk with yellow, pink, and blue chalk; painting a castle that I dreamed of in a far away land. I can still feel the unpolished wooden steps beneath my feet that I stumbled up every night, barely escaping the grasp of the monsters that lived in the darkness below. I remember our basement, dark and intimidating, my mother told me it was haunted and that I should never go down into it, and I never did. I remember dancing on the slippery tile floor of the kitchen with my socks on, pretending I was a ballerina. I remember my tiny closet, and how it was so big to me at the time, how the highest shelf seemed like the tallest mountain. I remember all the adventures I had with my sister in the empty guest room; how the bed served as a ship and I was a warrior searching for land. I remember my father's garage which contained a broken down Model T whose red paint job had faded, and every tool you could imagine. I remember growing up; learning that the Tooth Fairy was really my mother when I caught her placing a coin under my pillow. I remember learning how to tell time on an analog clock and how to multiply double digit numbers on the living room coffee table. Most of all, I remember my family. How we knew to begin planting flowers in the yard every spring from the blooming Jakarumba. We played tag and hide-and-seek and there was no shortage of smiles or laughter. Every day was an adventure.

Now I live in a more contemporary house. It's clean, refreshing, and well taken care of, and I love living in it, but somedays I wish I could go back to that old house. Inside there are memories waiting to be rediscovered and reminisced in. Its unpredictable floors and unreliable steps were what helped me grow and learn, and I will always remember the place where I was built.



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Laugh-it-OutThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jun. 20, 2013 at 4:24 pm
This was amazing. Beautiful job! I could see this house and it reminded me of country house. The way you described hanging out with your sister on the guest bed: i did that too with my sis!! This was beautiful and i think it made me realize what we had. All those cute little kid memories! It neary brought tears to my eyes. Beautiful job. 5/5 stars :D have a wonderful day and keep rockin
 
torreyhenry95 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Jun. 22, 2013 at 5:59 pm
Thanks so much! I loved writing this piece and it is truly one of my favorites. I appreciate your praise!
 
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