Cleo lay open to the morning feeling it and content, benevolently joyful, to feel it. The warmth upon her skin. The slight dampness at the back of her neck in the center under fine new hair where it lifted from the pillows. The softness of the sheet, its weightlessness, yet possessed of substance sufficient to emanate scents clustered with meaning and memories as they drifted unhurried above them. The quiet room, a cube of old ivory with 3 cracks upon the ceiling 1might call scars from the last earthquake yet Cleo preferred to think of them as gratuitous art and offering and, too, a little bit of scrying formed into the loose-jointed shape of a crane. The wood of the sills and doors was old and worn, with the grain and grooves of an earlier age, painted over in places, smelling like time, countless summer afternoons and raining autumn mornings, odors freed to weave the memories of others before her face, freed, called forth, by the sun.
        When sun touched the sill so early in the day Cleo's heart leaped up and she felt a girl.
        The girl she had been and still was somehow had jumped to her knees, tugging at the folds of pleated gown and hugging her pillow to her had watched the sun rise higher, felt its rays and power and sweetness gift to all, sensed the stirrings it engendered, coursing winds, rising trees and grasses, moving herds, the clouds chorused and went away, the moisture in the air went away, the sky broadened.
        All would happen today.
        Every day was like that. In Africa.