"Sometimes I hear them laughing late, beer cans and cats and the trees talking to themselves. He lets her ride his bike around the block, or they take walks together. I watch them. She holds his hand, and he stops sometimes to tie her shoes. But Emma says those kinds of girls, those girls are the ones that go into alleys. She, who can't tie her shoes. Where does he take her?
Everything is holding its breath inside of me. Everything is waiting to explode like Christmas. I want to be all new and shiny. I want to sit out at night, a boy around my neck and the wind under my skirt. Not this way, every evening talking to the trees, leaning out my window, imagining what I can't see.
A boy held me once so hard, I swear, I felt the grip and weight of his arms. But it was a dream."
--House on Mango Street