This morning I walk my daughter to the carpool meeting spot, an industrial zone where commuters and the T converge. She knows the shortest route, dodges through the yard of the nearby church rectory, bemoans the missed traffic light at Mass Ave, darts across the grass to the opposite side of a large traffic island, to a street of houses I don’t know, through a parking lot beside abandoned industrial buildings, aiming for a mystery spot, like Harry Potter aiming for the spot in the brick wall which reveals the Track 9 3/4 to the Hogwarts Express. Just as I say this aloud to my gal, she disappears through a hole in the fence. This time I follow, having told her as we crossed a worn place in the traffic island grass that people are like deer, worn place reminding me of deer paths in the woods I used to know in my own world of growing up. My girl lives in the city, and I follow her through these urban landscapes like a bunny, hopping along behind her through the fence, along the bike path towards the Alewife T, until I want to talk with her and she is so far ahead I lose my patience and tell her it feels rude that she won’t slow down, threaten to turn around and go home if she won’t let me catch up, and she tells me I walk too slow and that she will be late, which she might be, and I am, but it still hurts and when we say good-bye a few minutes later, she strapped into another mother’s mini van, me walking away to take a more leisurely route home along the Alewife Brook,  retracing steps from weekend walks on the new path there, I feel the hurt in her eyes and in my throat and all the way home until I find my computer here and write it down, all the way past a grungy backyard pool, a homeless guy with immaculate taste in woolen blankets sleeping on a bench, solar panels I will never have on the roof of someone who does, two swans tangling their necks into their bodies on the small pond near the T, thoughts of my beau and his day, of my life and his, some days separate as can be, some days like the swans, two feet apart, and of my gal, disappearing, like her brothers, one at school and with a friend overnight, the other on his way today to his college career fair, in the suit I mailed last Sunday, looking for a job. They grow up fast and it’s hard to impossible to keep up.

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