as the year retires

“they are smaller.”
“well up here, of course they are.”
“no,” she said as the wind took her hair and covered her face, “i mean to us.”
i moved the parted hair from her face and looked her in the eyes, “but we don’t know any one of them. how do we know how large or small they are?”
“every one starts off small to us, it’s only once we get to know them that they become larger to us. the successes, the hardships, the lies, the loves – the lives they lead. it’s amazing how someone so small to us at first, can become the biggest thing in our own life.”
“i see what you mean, but, that means most of everyone will remain small to us then,” i said looking off over the escarpment.
“it’s the sad truth, i suppose,” she sighed and then began to smile, “but it’s always worth it to try – you could find that someone who compliments you perfectly.”
i held her hand as we both stared out to the city below, the wind still whistling against us as the year ran out it’s final minutes.

allie pt.2

read pt. 1

“you look the same,” she said letting off a quirky smile before reaching for my hand. the small of her palms showing from her oversized coat.

“you look and smell like a strawberry.” i let off a toothy grin as i clasped my hand around hers.

“well you always said i was sweet, so i figured i would play the part.” she came close to my side.

her hand was cold coming out of the apartment, i wondered if her mom had heat. she deserved better, but never had a qualm about living there. in the summer she slept over at my apartment for a solid week. her father lived in the same town as me and they disagreed about the direction her life was going. so she decided it best to escape to me as things cooled down. i didn’t mind her company, however, i knew it would never be permanent.

“where are we heading tonight?” she said looking up to me, her head barley popping out of her coat. “i’m hungry and i want to be entertained,” she mocked in a fancy dialect letting out a petite laugh.

“i figured we could go to that bar off main, they were advertising a live band tonight in the paper.”

“excellent! onward!” she began to pick up speed as we sloshed through the messy city sidewalks.

as we continued down the road, the occasional vehicle would pass by and she would motion to push me onto their coming path before yanking my hand back, getting closer to me each time. i laughed and kissed the top of her forehead. she smiled and rested her head against my arm.

“i should have stayed,” she said.

“at home tonight? why?”

“no, no. at your place. in the summer,” she explained, “we could have stopped time and spent it in the sun and never had to deal with this cold abysmal weather. even the cool breezes during the night were warmer.”

“if only that’s how it worked,” i said with a smile, clutching her hand tighter.

“you did miss me, didn’t you?” she said her lower lip curving and her eyes staring deep into mine.

“of course, why wouldn’t i?”

“just the way things ended, i didn’t mean to offend you -”

“not at all. it’s water under the bridge. i’m here now. that’s all that matters,” i explained.

we fell silent for a small stretch, her hand still clasping mine and her head still against my arm. i began to think of her and the summer. in reality i blamed myself for what transpired. while staying with me for that week she found out her mother had come back into the state and offered to accommodate her. i asked her to stay with me and we could figure out our lives together. but the chance to start fresh somewhere new, away from her father, was too appealing. she packed up within the hour of her mother’s phone call and was gone before the sun went down. my words fell deaf upon her ears. she called me two weeks later to make amends. i’d been in constant contact with her since. hoping i could get her to change her mind.

as we approached main, the street lights shone down upon the snow, reflecting upon the tall commercial buildings and closed storefronts. we saw no other pedestrians as we turned onto the street. the occasional taxi cab flew by, but the sidewalks remained barren.

“i’m glad you came, i’ve been excited to see you again. my mother was surprised you didn’t bail. i told her you weren’t the type of soul to do such a thing. i was right.” she let off a told you so grin to me and kicked off the slush from her shoes. the shoveled sidewalks along main only bearing a small dusting of the falling snow.

“i’m glad you know me so well.”

as we came closer to the bar, the smog in the sky began to shift revealing a crescent moon.

“it’s beautiful,” she said, “it’s so rare to see the sky in this city.” the moon beams shining down on her as she spoke. “how fortunate of us to encounter it.” she let out a smile as she turned to me.

i took her by her sides and kissed her, as the beams began to hide once more, behind the smog.


i saw her walking out of my local coffee shop and i couldn’t waste this chance meeting to talk to her. i walked across the street and moved in front of her. she stopped full tilt and took a step back.


“hi. how are you?” i said smiling ear to ear.

her lips squished and her eyebrows raised, “do i know you?” her eyes glancing over me.

“well sort of,” i let out slowly, “you know of me. you actually played me in a short film you made in college.”

a puzzled expression fell over her and she spoke sternly,”right, okay – well i have to go. thanks.” she began walking down the street.

“another time then? i’m around here quite a bit!” i shouted out to her.

she took her phone out of her pocket, dialled and raised it to her head and began talking while walking away, glancing back at me twice before turning onto another side street.

a woman with a small child, who i’m quite sure had witnessed the entire encounter, gave me a queer look and walked by quickly.

“she totally knows me!” i shouted reassuringly to them.

how odd.


allie pt.1

the thing i regret most about that visit, is that i didn’t wear a heavier coat.

there was a light flurry of snow covering the rusted tracks and quiet city.  i had taken the train down, the station was located in the centre of the city’s industrial section and the sun had already set after dinnertime. though dark, you could still make out the clouds of smog collecting from the hundreds of factory smokestacks pumping it out. it was freezing and my arms had gone numb on the walk over to her mom’s basement apartment. i remember passing a small park beside an abandoned convenience store. it looked as though it had been torched months ago and left in disarray.

near the outer parts of the industrial side there were small apartment buildings and townhouses in various states of repair. the one i was looking for sat across from an old army tank. a relic from a veteran who salvaged each piece over a series of years and finally choose to construct it on his front porch. i pushed for further details upon hearing this, alas the gentlemen went inside before the first snowfall of the season and came out in an ambulance a few weeks thereafter.

her mothers building stood three stories tall and had a tax office on the main floor that was only open during the beginning of the year. the main entrance had a plywood board over it and a large red “X” spray painted on, with some minor graffiti tags. i walked out to the back where another door with bars and chained fogged glass, had several locks running along its side. there was a small brown box to the right of it with a dial pad and a pushed-in speaker. i punched in “1-0-2-*” and a small ring emitted from the speaker. it rang twice before a muffled, “hello?” came out.

“hi, it’s just me – sorry i’m a bit late the train was off schedule and-“, the speaker buzzed and cut me off.

“who is this?” said the female voice.

“oh, i’m sorry i’m looking for allie – i might have typed in the wrong number-” the speaker buzzed cutting me off again.

“she’ll be right-” the voice cut out as the speaker emitted a horrendous screeching feedback.

i stepped back and looked around, the snow was still coming down and the moon was still hidden behind the smog. i heard a distant slam and echoed stomping come from the building. i looked to the door and made out a blurry figure jostling the door open. a dainty hand with purple nail polish emerged banging on the side of the door as it became stuck on the concrete below it, a scrapping noise following the motion. allie emerged, slamming the door behind her. a crackling of metal and glass as the frame absorbed the blow.

“hello,” she said wearing a bright red winter coat and a denim skirt. she had dyed her hair a tint of pink and blue – different then the coarse blonde she had in the summer. the coat was puffy and made her figure quite humorous. she probably weighed only a hundred pounds and this made it seem as though she could float off into the night sky. the irony of the skirt was lost upon me however. she let out a smile that warmed my insides, and her blue eyes still stood out from her hair. “do i get a hug, or are you going to stand there forever?”

“uh- no, no – sorry,” i moved over to her and hugged her. she smelt of strawberries and tobacco. an odd combination – the only thing that had’t changed since the last time i saw her.

read pt. 2

autumn changes

i remember staring at your front door for a few minutes, shaking my head in disbelief over what had just transpired. 

and for the majority of my walk back home i kept my head down, holding back tears. i looked at the aged sidewalks spread with the occasional piece of garbage and cigarette butt. 

but then there were the leaves. 

while i paid no attention to the wind rustling through my worn-in jacket, the fallen leaves were at its mercy. blowing in any direction the wind commanded. in such large groups and with a variety of different colours. 

i gathered myself and looked up higher to the trees that aligned themselves in the foreground of house yards that were shedding off these small distinct pieces. watching the tree even sway to the harsh blows each time the wind beckoned. 

that’s the thing about nature, i suppose. the trees adapt and change to the season and even though they have roots deep below – every now and then they go with the curve of nature, to survive. whether it be the hot summer days, cold detrimental winters, renewing springs or the turnover of autumn – the trees adapt, making the necessary changes to continue on. 

so after all this thinking of nature and the changes that go on in life as well, i kept walking towards home. but this time with my head up, eyes still watering, but accepting change. 

i will never forget that walk home.