The park, again

11 May

I cannot stop writing about the park. Today as I sat on the bench, eating lunch and reading the New Yorker, I half had my eye on two ducks swimming in the pond in front of me. One was female, the other male, one brown and white, the other a green, purple, brown and white sheen. The weren’t begging as some park ducks do. They were just  watching me. Half way through the article I was reading, about Berkely in California, they waddled up onto the rocks rimming the pond. They settled down in the sun, smoothed their feathers down onto their bodies and twisted their flexible necks until their bills tucked cozily into their back feathers. And they closed their eyes. I never thought grown ducks cute. Baby ducks, sure, but grown ducks? These ones were. When I left they untucked their heads and looked at me as if asking, “You’re leaving, really, in this warm sunshine?” I nodded sadly, yes, and walked away.

The other delight the park gave me today came by way of wind. White pedals blew into my hair and across my magazine. They continued blowing, these little pedals, so much so that I closed the magazine and turned to see their origin. To my left, across the dirt path, I see a tree filled with white, blooming flowers. A flower tree. I didn’t know they existed. Every time the wind blew through the park, it shook off a handful of those petals and threw them my way. I saw them scattered across the dirt pathway like rice after a wedding. I saw them floating on the tips of the grass. I saw them drifting into shadows. I saw them across the text of the New Yorker. When I left I saw them twirling with wind as sunlight caught their smooth white surfaces.

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