March 28, 2019

Late Winter Snow


I walked around in it...it wasn’t the powdery kind good for good skiing, I was too poor for that, or flopping down and making snow angels but I was too old for that now anyway, and it wasn’t the good packing type for snowballs and evil looking snowmen with spray paint caps for giant eyes and menacing mouths like we used to make staring at our neighbors who we didn’t like...it was early March now, a soppy sloppy muddy ruddy month when the farmers get ready for planting...soybeans, hay, wheat, and cucumbers...onions, potatoes, snap beans and sweet corn for summer eating with cooked out barbecue chicken...like they say, lt don’t get no better than that...it had been warmer the last couple of days and now it was a wet snow—the kind that if you fell in, you’d get up wet...a slushy messy snow...not good for playing football in or sledding or sneaking onto the utility easement when the snow was good and throwing snowballs at cars as they went by—if they slowed down or stopped—QUICK run between houses and into the safety of a friend's garage--pre-teens sitting around and passing around a bottle of beer stolen from his dad’s beer fridge and gawk at centerfolds of his old man’s Playboy magazines that he kept ‘hidden’ in there until the danger passed...the cars had to go around the block to look for us giving us enough time to hide...it was too far for them to get out of the car and cross the snowy field and come after us like a Panzer tank traversing the Russian landscape during Operation Barbarossa from where they were HAHA...but here and now out of my aunt and uncle's white clapboard house with the glass block basement windows after roast beef dinner with mashed potatoes and hot buttered rolls and green beans and apple pie for dessert...apple pie always reminds me of July 4th and barbecues and fireworks that boom and smoke and hiss and explode into bright eye splitting colors that everybody oohs and aahs over...and didn’t have any business being served this time of the year...the men folk were watching some basketball game on tv—Celtics and somebody—I didn’t like basketball and still don’t and my uncle had what I think was one of the prototypes when they started making tv’s...some old Philco black and white 17 inch [?] model with rabbit ears...I needed some air and someplace more private to break wind and get rid of that bloated ‘I just gained ten pounds’ feeling in my overstuffed stomach... I pulled the heavy wooden side door and pushed the torn screen door and stepped out on the welcome mat and felt a slap of cold but not uncomfortable air...air just cold enough to be refreshing...clear pointed icicles dripping from the gutter...this was the time of the year downtown when ice would fall from the skyscrapers and injure or kill people...I sized up the long driveway, dirt, gravel and dirty gray snow piles and the wire fence that ran the length of it—in the big front yard was one of those ceramic little black men holding a lantern...then went across the street where there was a ball field with advertising on the outfield walls and enclosed dugouts...nobody around so I slipped through an opening and walked over by the pitchers mound—just stood there a spell thinking nothing...just looking at the field and bleachers draped in melting snow and then started thinking spring thoughts of ball games and no jackets required and upcoming summer vacations in the car.