Turtle in pond

“You know when it happened, don’t you?” he asked.


I just stared at him, my mind a blank. At that moment there was nothing in it except sunshine and wind and, in one tiny corner, the thought that I really did know where I had misplaced that green scarf.


“You took your eyes off it and let it slip from your mind and, just like that, it drifted away. You’ll never get it back. It’s gone for good. You can’t do that. You are responsible for some things forever and it’s up to you to hold on as tightly as you can; as if your life depended on it. After all, someone’s just might.”


If I had known him, I might have listened a little more closely. It might have changed things. But he was a stranger and, as he walked away, feet crunching the rock path, I was torn between the oddity of what he said, the invasiveness of his finger wiping away my tear, the horror at letting a lunatic get so close.






Photo and text by Sandra Peterson Ramirez.