Jones going to daycare
On Wednesday I took our two year-old son Jones on a short walk up the street to his first encounter with Daycare.
It was an autumn cool morning, the dew still hanging off leaves. The air was light and clean and felt as if it came from very far away, and Jones’ eyes were so wide and bright they were like gravity– everything bending and speeding toward him.
A plane flew overhead and he froze on the sidewalk, pointing at the sky. He was blown-away and kept looking over at me to make sure I was seeing this miracle, too, this burning bush. I did not know how to explain the sky, or tell the story of how humans achieved flight, and so I just said, “Plane!”
He blinked into the sun and sky, continuing to look up through the green infinity of leaves, waiting for whatever else might streak across the sky. Squirrels, like shadows, jumped from branch to branch, and as this early light hit the red brick of the houses across the street, an old, prosperous looking man stepped out of his front door and got into his sports car. He’d traveled great distances to get to this beautiful autumn day, and he might have been wondering how many more of these good days he had left. He started the car and pulled out of the driveway, at which point three birds suddenly burst from a tree. Jones was amazed again. “Tree!”, he shouted, but his eyes were following the birds, each one of them off to unknowable adventures.
Jones stopped to examine every bush on our little journey, every forgotten thing on the sidewalk. He was so happy and slow up the street, so mindful. He wanted to meet it all– the college-aged woman struggling slowly along on her morning run, the two dogs being taken for a walk, the discarded table left broken on a tuft of grass, and the truck, the dazzling truck that rolled heavily by like some sort of glittering robot. All of it, each and every precious thing. And then we came upon some flowers and he stopped again, pointing at them, “Mommy!” he declared, “Mommy!”
And yes, yes, of course mommy was a flower. Nothing in this universe yet separate from anything else, and everything proof of magic.