Sunday Sustenance
by Theo Greenblatt

At Camp Bendito we wore uniforms on Sundays: gray Bermuda shorts and short-sleeved blouses with a red Camp Bendito crest on the pocket. My uniform was tight all over, budding breasts causing an unsightly buckle in my crest, though I was not yet nine.

We attended chapel, pointless to me, in a sunlit clearing in the woods. Other girls knelt devoutly on the prickly grass. I knotted bracelets from weeds and wild clover while the sermon droned on.

At home on a Sunday morning I would be cross-legged on the living room floor balancing a bowl of Cocoa Puffs, the smell of last night’s popcorn heavy in the air, the cartoons on whisper before anyone else was up. A shaft of sunlight exposing a galaxy of glistening dust motes between the tv and me.

At Camp Bendito, after chapel and the somber breakfast at long wooden tables, we were allowed to visit the PX to buy candy. Hershey’s, Nestle’s Crunch, Almond Joy. While my bunkmates played Tag and Mother May I, I sat cross-legged on my neatly made cot and devoured all my spoils at once, wishing I was the kind of girl who could make them last instead.

IMAGE: Camp Bendito postcard available at


Theo Greenblatt
teaches writing at the Naval Academy Preparatory School in Newport, Rhode Island. Her work, both fiction and nonfiction, has appeared or is forthcoming in The Worcester Review, Harvard Review, Clarion, Pembroke Magazine, The Examined Life, and other venues. Her nonfiction piece “True but Incomplete,” in The Flexible Persona, was nominated for a Pushcart Prize. Readers are invited to visit her web page at

AUTHOR’S PHOTO CAPTION: Another Sunday, Newport, Rhode Island (September 20, 2015).