Sunday, September 11, 2016

Snow flowers (a story)

A warm, pre-storm summer breeze exploded the dandelions, heavy with seeds, painting the air white. "Stephanie! Look! Snow flowers!" cried the amazed little boy, drawing the attention of his sister, as he zigzagged chasing this way and that.

He ran through the yard, dancing, giggling, mindlessly pursuing the dandelion snow, a butterfly that had floated into the mix, and nothing in particular, all at the same time. He was four and she was his teenage baby-sitter, 14, on this beautiful summer day laced with his gleeful laughing.

Both were blonde and fair. His eyes were blue like the clear summer sky above them. They seemed to smile all the time. Hers were a haunting emerald green, perfect for looking meditative or bored, as the occasion suited. This was a bored, or at least semi-bored moment.

It was hot. July. 1981. The small radio by her side was oozing "Ebony and Ivory" in accompaniment to her little brother’s pirouetting. Clouds were just beginning to edge the incredible blue sky. A sky that was like a huge smooth ocean over their heads.

She would sometimes lay in the middle of the back yard and stare up into the sky for an hour or two at a time. Soaking up sun and letting her mind reel out, up into the big blue expanse. Her imagination like a helium balloon on an endless string, climbing higher and higher into the possibilities and wide wonder. Her dreams sailed on the sea of the sky.

But not today. Today was the day to baby-sit the kid. Today of all days....

I wrote this several years ago. Let me know what you think. And please feel free to share your 9/11 memories in the comments.

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