Tuesday, November 7, 2017

24 Degrees and Cloudy

Sylvan's blue and orange glove keeps slipping out of my knitted mitten.

He and I wave to Ivory on the school bus, go down the street, and up and over the bridge.
There is a skiff of snow on the ground, a hint of sunlight through the clouds, and the sound of birds chirping. Flocks of black birds morph across the sky, the morning light flashing off of their wing flaps, and for an instant they are foating glitter.

Our hands slip and we switch sides.

I can't remember what we talk about, but the kid walking next to me is happy and bubbly and is rattling on barely audible over the drone of trucks. It is hard to imagine that just half an hour earlier, he was screaming about breakfast and shoes and going to school in general.

The snow and cold surprised me.

I wasn't ready.

Sylvan is bundled up in snow pants and bright orange sneakers.
His sister's hand me down bogs I saved from last winter are still too big, and I haven't had a chance to take him looking for new ones. I said sorry a million times, as I begged him to just put on his shoes, to just get out the door, to put on a hat.

Our walk to school takes less than 15 minutes.
It is the same amount of time as the school bus takes to arrive. 
Across the playground, I see Ivory scamper off the bus and run inside.

I leave Sylvan standing just inside the school yard fence and keep walking.

Suddenly, two arms wrap around me, as his hurling body comes from behind and almost knocks me to the ground. His face grins up at mine.

The grows brighter, birds are chirping tucked away in hedges, but I feel noticeably colder as I walk on alone.