Most would argue that roses can’t be grown in wintertime.
Not here, anyway, where ice and frigidity prevail,
With temps “below the donut,” as the weather guy declares.
But you, at age three, have proven them wrong.
I smelled their pungent beauty just this morning, after all,
Even as I tried to hurry about, as I am wont to do.
I pushed and you pulled, studying snowflakes and your feet
As they zig-zagged through the YMCA parking lot.
Standing by the door near the smiling lady who held it open,
Pausing while you meandered through, unaware
Of the rushing, speeding, time-focused world beyond yours,
I willed myself to let go, to join you in your bliss.
Later, we slogged through white streets in the van on a mission.
Again, I pushed, but you resisted, asking me how
Snow could find its way into that hiding spot at the store entrance.
I had no easy answers, so we wondered together.
By then, I’d caught on to the game and I, too, began to slow.
We rode the indoor ferris wheel, giggling and spying
On the tiny people below who needed to get somewhere fast.
We glided lightly through the air, rose petals everywhere.
After perusing winter gear, leafing through gloves on clearance,
We passed the escalator entrance, froze, retraced our steps,
And, together, hopped onto the moving stairs to higher ground,
Where we enjoyed the bird’s-eye view before our descent.
But my favorite of all moments was our time in the café, where
I watched you nibble pizza, eat pop with a spoon, then lick
And slurp swirled banana ice cream, declaring it finished at the cone.
As the clock behind you sneered, you played with your straw.
And as we slothfully made our way to the front doors, I watched
As others watched you, their pace changing in accord.
While you traced letters in the granite floor with your snow boots,
I waited patiently, inhaling the scent of roses in wintertime.