Monday, April 23, 2007

Today in the Park

While sitting on a lakeside bench in Brooklyn's Prospect Park late this afternoon, I watched a bit of wedding photography. I saw an androgynous character on a folding bike puzzling out how to pick some high-hanging magnolia blooms, and then I was greeted by a snapping turtle the size of a watch face as it crossed the path on its way to the lake.

And I observed a disgraceful quantity of garbage as it lay scattered about the park. I saw gum wrappers, beer bottle caps, cap-less lip balm, shreds of toilet paper, a SIM card from a cell phone, bright plastic bottle tops, and half a folding aluminum scooter.

Still, the grass was green and I could smell the magnolia petals even through my stuffy nose. And the loudest noises were birds and ducks and geese –- not horns and engines.

Later the sound of a race car intruded, and persisted. As it happened, it was a very small one, about the size of a shoe box -- a remote controlled car with a tiny internal combustion engine from the sound of it.

Then I saw a swan glide across the water smoothly and quietly.

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