Against the wind, under the clouded sun,
pushing homeward on the return
half of my daily walk, my legs weren’t
so much tired as frozen, almost
like cold metal pistons beneath
the blue fabric of my jeans. I headed
for Elaine’s store, ostensibly
to buy lottery tickets, but really
to warm up for a few precious minutes.
As I folded the tickets and put them
into my ragged wallet, Elaine said,
“You’re a brave one going out walking
in weather like this.” She smiled.
I smiled back. “You’re really kind, Elaine –
anyone else would have said I’m crazy.”
I turned to leave. She laughed softly.
I pulled open the metal-trimmed glass door.
As the rackety wind dashed in,
she called out in a louder, sparkling voice,
“And that too!” I pulled the door closed.
Once more walking against the wind,
scuffling under the clouded sun,
I thought I heard her laughter still.
It was the wind, wrangling with the branches
of nearby pine trees and a leafless oak.
* * *
(c) Gregory V Driscoll 2012