Wednesday, October 23, 2019

An Early Dinner

I glanced outside at the falling snow,
thick white flakes sticking to the road.
The air inside the café was perfumed
with cinnamon, cardamom, cloves.
My mother wouldn’t stop talking
about her new silk scarf,
“from the Orient,” she said.
“You mean Asia,” I replied.
But she wouldn’t listen to me,
and I couldn’t pay attention to her.
I just kept thinking about the snow,
how it would seep through
the bottom of my shoes,
cold, wet socks,
how I’d have to brush it off my car,
how the flakes would fall in a shower
onto the driver’s seat,
how the traffic would be snarled,
how our wheels would skid at stoplights,
how it would continue to pile up overnight,
wet heavy piles to shovel in the morning.
My mother had to leave.
She was going to some crafting class
involving gluing succulents into a round glass ball
and making it look like some kind of fairy cottage.
“Are you sure you don’t want to come with?”
she asked, dabbing petroleum jelly on her chapped lips.
The child in me yearned to go with her everywhere;
the surly teenager in me said no.
“You didn’t dress warmly enough,” she scolded.
“Here, take my scarf,” she commanded, tying it on my neck.
“It looks better on you anyway.”

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