The neighbor ladies who lived across the street,
had houses on either side of the Back family.
Patti Back was my friend and being two years younger than me,
I looked after her.
We picked Four O Clock seeds to sell to the neighbor ladies,
Happily accepted discarded lady clothing for us to play Dress-Ups in
or old lace curtains,l a greatly coveted item
to drape under the Back family’s back porch,
just the right size for dress ups.
Sometimes the neighbor ladies gave us fabric scraps
that we used to make doll clothing–for ten inch dolls that
predated Barbie and her entourage.
Making doll clothes was something to do on rainy days,
if we were tired of playing board games like Monopoly.
I wonder now what happened to the neighbor ladies
when our families moved away from Sutter Street.
What do you suppose they did with the discarded clothing
and fabric scraps? Who collected Four O clock seeds for them
after we were gone?
Sandra Lee Smith
original undated/updated July 16, 2018