Wednesday, May 30, 2007

A Nest of Glass...

I was reading on the train when I realized that I missed my stop.

Instead of switching sides in the station and waiting for the next train to go back to my stop (which was only one stop away), I decided to walk home. The day was not too terribly hot and it wasn't too humid out. On the way home there is a small park and it afforded me the opportunity to sit in the shade of an oak tree while reading outside on a sunny day.

The park housed a small playground. As I sat there, I couldn't help but notice the neighborhood children swinging on swings and climbing on jungle-gyms and dangling impossibly from metal bars sprouting from the concrete expanse. Laughter and sing-song chants filled the air. It made me miss Azalea horribly. I could perfectly imagine her running around with the other children singing or sliding down the slides giggling all the way.

I told myself that when I finished reading the chapter, I would proceed with my homeward march. One chapter turned into two and soon it was high noon.

Most of the walk home, I had to shield my eyes from the sun. About halfway down the block, I saw something in the street sparkling. Living in New York, I've learnt not to pass by shiny things laying in the street. I once found a small diamond earring. As I approached, my mind raced through all the fantastical possibilities. Perhaps they were diamonds! Or a bag of Swarovski crystals!

But what I found wasn't made of diamonds or expensive crystal. Instead, there was shattered glass and bits of twisted chrome from a recent car accident. Bits of a bicycle's reflector and shards of a car-door mirror could be discerned. Resting amidst the residue of an accident was a tiny shoe. In the nest of broken things, there was a small child's untied shoe. It was white and from a few feet away looked like a little egg.

I wanted to pluck it from its perilous bed of sharp things and hold it against my chest, to wish it back its lost mate and the child who once wore them. All I could think about was that a child must have been injured in the car accident. This thought tumbled through my mind, gaining shape and strength in my imagination. I wanted to snatch it up and run back to the park, shouting, "Your little brother or sister has lost their shoe! Your mother and father will be very sad to have misplaced it!"

From the nest of glass, I wanted to rescue this lost item and return it to its owner, like some kind of fairy tale story.

No comments: