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Hide and Seek

She came to our doorstep

one blustery, snow-swept afternoon

looking for a playmate

I didn't think twice

plus laptop-addled Mother

had mmm-hmm’d her assent

I donned my coat

and headed out, heedless

into the billowing gale

Bootprints danced through drifts,

mischievous little snow devils

leading me to the pond's frozen edge

Where she stood

waiting, alone

out on the ice

I filled my lungs to scream

a warning, but cruel, frost-filled

gusts seared my throat and

I managed only a raspy, gaspy

cough as clutching at my neck

I fell back onto the bank

Just then the maelstrom broke

and in that newfound crisp-clear

air I saw

A withered, wretched, frozen hand

grasping up through the ice

where she’d been standing

Its fingers curled and

beckoned me: come and play

down beneath the glossy sheen


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