Grade 6

British Columbia

The Meaning Of Home

“Ari!! Let’s go to the park!” Hollered my younger sister, Coral. What she called the park was the boulevard outside our run-down apartment building, which was home to a squeaky swing set.
“I’m packing. Remember, we’re moving?” I said, annoyed by her disruption.
“Can I help you?” Coral persisted.
“Go away.” I said.
“It’s my room too.” She said, using her go-to excuse.
“I said go away.” Miracle of miracles, she did.

Puddles of light squeezed into our room, through the cracks between the blinds and the window frame. The floor was patchy with light, highlighting the marker streaks that Coral and I had sworn not to tell about.

I carefully lifted my favorite photo in the room, of me and Coral playing in the river when we were younger.
I opened the drawer in my bureau and saw a large cocoa powder tin full of pennies Coral and I had collected over the years, and taken with us to each apartment. Suddenly my head flooded with memories of finding the pennies. Hunting all our streets for shiny pennies glistening in the sunlight.
Feeling blue, I carefully placed the tin in a box. I sat staring at the tin for a moment, until I heard the door creaking open. Coral stood timidly behind it.

“I brought you these.” She said, shyly holding out a bouquet of dandelions.
Then I realized that to me, home was not just a place, but a feeling of love and family. A feeling that is so strong it fills your house and transforms it into a home.

“Let’s go find a vase for these, okay?” I asked Coral, who stood looking just as lonely as I felt.
“Then can we go to the park?” Coral was suddenly excited.
“Sure. And look for pennies.”