Jasper by William Cannon

My name is Jasper, 5th grader. I’m at the library. The
one downtown. I’m with my mom. She’s inside. I’m at the top
of the steps. Outside. Thirty-seven of ‘em. I snuck out here. I
got 68 multicolor bouncy balls. I hid ‘em in my backpack.

Three…two…one. I let ‘em all go at once. These are the
small bouncy balls. ‘Bout the size of a grape. Like I said, 68 of
‘em. Green. Yellow. Blue. Red. Orange. They scatter
everywhere. Bounce. Bounce. Bounce. Bounce.

Uh-huh. Just as I thought. Everyone is smilin’ at what I
did. Will ya look at that. All the grownups stop. Kinda like a
policeman blew his whistle and yelled, “STOP.” They watch
and look and point. Laughin’ the whole time. The few kids out
here run after the bouncy balls. I don’t mind. They can have
‘em. Man. Am I cool or what. I do lots of wacky stuff like this.
I call it, scattering sunshine.

I give it all I got everyday. I comb my hair. Brush my
teeth. I say please and thank-you with sugar on top. I’m sweet
like candy. Cute like a bug. I’m happy. My smile’s magic. My
eyes sparkle. I glow with happy power. When I see myself in
the mirror, there’re swirlies of glitter going round and round and
round me. I’m kinda special. I got the joy-joy-joy-joy down in
my heart. Everywhere I go I change the world around me. I
dunno. It’s just what I do n’all.

When I see people—like grownups—I say, “Hello,
Ma’am.” “Hello, Sir.” “What a beautiful day this is.” I smile
big—give a thumbs up and I’m on my way.

Who knows? Maybe I’ll see you.

You’ll know when you see me. I can’t be missed. Big
smile. White teeth. Nice hair. Sweet. Cute.

Oh, yeah, and I glow.

I’m Jasper, 5th grader.

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