Friday, October 12, 2007

poster children....

...for All Pikes Peak Reads.

Grant's Zorro is sporting a homemade sword forged from branches in our backyard and fastened together with pipe cleaners. (Only they don't call them that anymore because it's not PC). The cowboy hat I picked up in the Goodwill parking lot where I'm not quite sure what happens... there's lots of boxes full of stuff and men (generally Mexican) sit around on their tailgates and look over the goods. I don't know the rules for this event, but I have managed to glean a pair of nice black shoes, several toys, and that brown hat from them, always for free. (It might have something to do with the mini-skirts and my coy attempts at engaging them in Spanish, apropos to the hat being used for a Zorro costume).
Grant's cape is a black fleece blanket held together by a safety pin, which he found by recklessly dumping out the contents of a clay jar that sits on my dresser. You know. The one that collects all the items that emerge from pockets at the end of the day: all the pins, marbles, pennies, paper clips, rocks, scrabble tiles, buttons, and rubber bands that simply have nowhere else to go.

Bennett's Greek fisherman's hat came from, well, Greece. I bought it when I was there nearly 20 years ago, never dreaming it would end up on a 6-year-old's head (MY six year old!) when he wanted to be Zorro. Together, we threw open the old suitcase of dress up materials, and dug around until we found it. He didn't care that it wasn't a caballero hat; it was black, and that was just fine. His "cape" is fashioned from an old piece of black material I bought when putting on Orpheus and Eurydice with a bunch of middle schoolers. He was lamenting that it had a hole in it, but after my quick-witted explanation of "that's where Zorro got sliced by a sword but narrowly escaped unharmed", it quickly became a badge of honor. It was fastened at the neck with a gold pin I found in my mother's old jewelry box, which also sits on my dresser.

The masks were made by the boys at Acacia Park during the All Pikes Peak Reads kick-off party.

On this evening, they dreamed of being something bigger than they really are, with more courage, more luck, and more daring than they possess in real life. This child's play is fascinating to watch, as little beings don not only capes and hats and boots, but also personalities and attributes. I love Halloween. The boundary between the worlds becomes thin, and we can all, for awhile, dig around in our closets, rummage through history, and become something more. Or at least different. It doesn't take money, only a little ingenuity and a willingness to suspend disbelief.

Bennett: "I want to be a hero when I grow up."
Grant: "So he robbed, but he was good."

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