bench

The park smells of wet grass and fresh mulch. Earthy scents that penetrate the nostrils. The glorious outdoors sounding their siren song, life affirming in its fresh openness. It is overcast and grey. An old man sits on a bench in a pork-pie hat watching the children play on the jungle gym. A father has turned away, on the phone in heated conversation. A mother fussing with her younger child, crying in its stroller. She is digging through her diaper bag, intent on finding something. Another man on another bench, reads the paper so it completely has covered his entire upper body, hiding his face. A moment passes and the old man lightly tugs his sleeve to glance at his watch. It is 2:30. He readjusts his seat and tries to pick a more comfortable spot on the hard wood holding him. Reaching into his coat pocket he rummages for a candy and finds a butterscotch. Pleased at his luck, he slowly unwraps it and pops it into his mouth, savoring the sweet, smoky flavor of a timeless classic he never grew tired of as a boy. He remembers when he was the age of all these children running around and playing. How he wishes to go back in time and join them. He watches 9-year-old Jimmy on the monkey bars, doing his best to go across, but ends up jumping down in the middle. He is not defeated and easily finds entertainment in laughing and he runs towards the slide. 5-year-old Jessica has just slid down, scooting her seat so that her feet can touch the ground and she can start running again. There are at least 5 other children, having the time of their lives, enjoying their afternoon, while some parents look on, some continue to the distracted, and some are nowhere to be found.

Author: Roe

29. she/her. Songwriter & Trek Punk Soul™.

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