How wonderful to be a child
Perched on Daddy’s shoulders
Her cheeks pinched by the mid-June cold 
Anticipating the lanterns carried by hundreds of people as
Thousands gather, children sit on the tar and
Adults huddle together, sharing body warmth and childish excitement.

This was our evening, the first weekend after the winter solstice, at the Lismore Lantern Parade. This is Elka and her little friend, “My friend called Milly, who I love.” The girls sit on their father’s shoulders, laughing. My mother’s heart melts. Their joy.

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