© 2010 David Parker

Small. Like a ballon let go, a tiny-tiny o, so tiny-tiny you can hardly see it. Just a second ago, it was in your hand, your fingers tight-grasping the little string. You wound it around your baby finger just to be sure. What was it? You can’t even remember. What it was to hold it. What it was to feel the tension of the round, red globe bobbing happily on the end of the string that slipped, unsnaked itself between your fingers, carried away on a breeze that felt like breath. It was a parting favor. While you were holding it, you could only think of holding it. Now that it’s gone, you can only think of how beautiful it is against the clouds. Brave. Alone. Red. And though the sight isn’t particularly singular, your heart does that thing where it tightens a little bit because you know. You’ll never see it again.

What is it about the present that makes everything else feel irrelevant?