shadow

Action in neighborhood park

The string of beads comes down the road - twenty feet of clothesline rope, a sober father at each end and thirteen little boys and girls holding tight - legs of a skinny centipede - giggling, staring all around, serious at each intersection.

At the entrance to the park, the leader halts, the followers squeeze up behind

like pleats of an accordion. The man shouts ''Now!'' and drops his rope: the centipede explodes, accordion screeches thirteen notes at once - so many pearls burst from their string, bounding and scattering into every corner of a green, tree-hung carpet.

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