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It's a miserably rainy day here in Washington, D.C., so I'm fishing out a photo from earlier this week. This is a close friend's 3-year-old daughter, Emmy, in a moment of quiet serenity.

I don't have children, but I am awed by the innocence of a child's eyes. It is a look that cannot be struck by an adult, no matter how sweet or unguarded they may be. A child's innocence is simple and complete. It's an innocence made possible by parents who create loving, protective cocoons for their children in hope that they might be eased into this difficult world of ours.

With time Emmy's innocence will yield to the reality of the world. For now, though, it is a simple and beautiful thing to behold.

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April 2005