A few years ago, from my front porch, I watched an enormous, dark turtle labor its way across Emerson Avenue. It was winter. Snow and ice and slush. A giant turtle? Then the scene resolved itself; the turtle was not a turtle but an old man who had fallen and was trying to crawl to the curb.
I ran out and helped him up and got his walker securely situated. He refused my offer of a ride and carried on down the sidewalk. Sometimes the world turns itself inside out for a few seconds and you stand there entirely confounded. All you can do is wait, and wonder, and let yourself be amazed.
Wind, by Mike White
Not a remarkable wind.
So when the bistro’s patio umbrella
blew suddenly free and pitched
into the middle of the road,
it put a stop to the afternoon.
Something white and amazing
was blocking the way.
A waiter in a clean apron
appeared, not quite
certain, shielding his eyes, wary
of our rumbling engines.
He knelt in the hot road,
making two figures in white, one
leaning over the sprawled,
broken shape of the other,
and now so carefully gathered in.
For more information about Mike White, please check out his website.