I gazed at the swirling water, wondering what it would feel like to reach my hand down and touch it. Something sparkled to my left. A quarter. This was new. Most people only threw in pennies or dimes. Maybe I could take just one. Just one little coin. Then I could finally be a big girl and buy my own gum ball from the twenty-five cent gum ball machine. My parents thought I was a vain little girl, so they would most likely think I was staring at my reflection in the water, not scheming to rid the mall of it’s wishes.
I never actually took a coin from the mall fountain. I threw in a penny here and a dime there, like the grownups told me to. As I grew older, I stopped throwing money in the fountain at all. I walked past the fountain like everybody else, with my starbucks drink in my left hand, and my Belk and Lord and Taylor shopping bags dangling over each arm. I chatted with my girl-friends about boys, dances, and shoes never pausing to glance at the fountain full of hopes and dreams. Like so many people, I forgot about the wishes.
Fountains across America are full of forgotten wishes. Wishes people made at one time or another because they really needed some good luck, or perhaps just because they had some spare change. Those fountains are wish collectors but never wish granters. Throwing wishes into a fountain is akin to wishing upon a star or blowing out birthday candles. These wishes are lost soon after they are made. Nevertheless, there is something about wishing upon inanimate objects that continues to give us hope. A sense that even though the coins will rust, the sun will rise, and the cake will be eaten, our dreams will live on, in the hearts and minds of those who remember them.
A dream is a wish your heart makes
When you’re fast asleep
In dreams you lose your heartaches
Whatever you wish for, you keep
Have faith in your dreams and someday
Your rainbow will come smiling thru
No matter how your heart is grieving
If you keep on believing
the dream that you wish will come true
Prompt from Daily Post at WordPress.com.