Why or how this image sticks
I couldn’t say.
Here we are, dead of winter,
sky the color of magnetic grains
all grasping for fragments,
holding each other together and the snow
is the space between, the bright that
measures through and squeaks out.
One flake, then another
lands on the top of Grandpa’s hat.
I watch from my stroller, hands
reaching hungrily up
and he says not now, not now
into the cold. His face glowing
strange with parking lot lights
and the blazing tip of his cigarette.
The chipped electric blue paint
on the brick building behind him,
the unshaved chin and throat.
Marble black eyes
hovering above me,
and the stunning quiet of that enormous face
dodging my whirling fingers,
the first falling flakes,
and anything else
he saw clinging
in the darkness.