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11.25.12 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.

I amble through the aisles again,
humming half-forgotten songs,
wondering why Crayola can't
pin down the color of Honeycrisps.
I throw smiles at passersby and
linger to catch bits of conversation;
today, a girl, perhaps ten, and her
father, gentle-eyed. List in hand –
errands are not yet dull for her,
enthusiasm radiates – a mention
of a forgotten pencil coupled with
a trembling lip is heartbreaking.
So there I stand, a silent onlooker
on the outskirts of childhood's
kingdom, a pen perpetually tucked
behind one ear – practicality turned
habit – do I dare break the sonder?
A quick moment gives gumption, I
no longer blend into the scenery –
“Here, you can have this one,” my
movements reminiscent of a shyly
offered flower. In that moment I can
see through her eyes: the world still
holds beauty – and then through her
father's: I've made it last, if only for
a day. A gift for both of them, and me.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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