My father's arms.
It was his arms I slept to, which scent I breathed in every night when I was young. Once the clock struck eight, Papa would turn off the lights, and his three girls huddled toward him in the bed. I remember how excited I was to hear his story about their farm until sleep rolled over me.
"I pulled the marble hard with my slingshot then released it! Poom! The boys ran from the tree then off to their houses!" exclaimed Papa.
My eyes glistened with amazement in the dark. The whole scene was right in front of me. "Why were they hiding behind the tree?" I asked.
"Well, because they were trying to scare me."
"And you were not scared?"
"No. How can I be scared when I had my dog Blacky beside me and God watching over me?"
My sisters, cousins and I were fond of watching horror stories and films, so I used to fear darkness. I did not like the uncertainty of it. I would not know whose hand held my ankle if ever, or if the eyeballs staring right across me were my sister's. So I would curl up, hide in a blanket, and open my eyes really wide.
It was different in my father's arms, though.
It was the safest place I knew.