Envelopes and Leaves

You, your mom, and I click-clacked along a railroad through the forest. Envelopes hung from branches in place of leaves, dappling the light, and here and there the autumn wind loosened one into a flutter. The train stopped, and an attendant in a red vest spoke: “Acropolis Station.”

In fact, no station was to be found outside—only beech trees and white envelopes, many of the latter flaking the muddy earth. Mom excused herself, said she had some reading to do. In a moment she was clomping among the trees in mud-caked shoes. A whistle sounded and the train pulled away. Your gaze stayed on Mom as she receded behind us, your expression soft with longing.

 

© Thad Fowler. All rights reserved.

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