I don’t want to walk between them and when I do it’s like someone has walked across my grave. I don’t like that metaphor, but it makes me shiver nonetheless.
The boy is young – maybe five or six – and he’s running rings around his mother. Not so much that she trips him up, but he’s swinging on trees, climbing on benches and drifting further from her. She keeps an eye on him of course but she seems more focused on making headway towards the distant behemoth supermarket.
In my mind it’s that I don’t want to block her sight of the child, but once I spotted them I couldn’t stop seeing them and really it’s that.
If you watch a group of people walking through a crowd you can usually tell who’s together. If you watch particularly closely you can tell who’s romantically together even if they’re distant.
If you watch closer…
I see the threads now. Subtle. Blue, usually. Willowing threads streaming from the back of the skull and linking between people. The little I know of knots sees that they aren’t bound together but rather the same thread. In a crowd they cross through each other but they don’t tangle, they don’t catch on trees or people or cats. But still I hate to walk through them.
Since spotting them though, I’ve began to catch sight of my own, cast in the smeared reflection of dull shop windows. It streams back, flickering in the wind like a loosewrapped scarf, its end tattered and sundered and unbound.