Parade

Wet, clumsy flakes drop from the sky,
The kind of snow that sinks in right away,
Soaking to the bone,
Piling up in the corners of car windows,
Wiped from windshields in heavy strokes—
Clearing the view ahead. 

The sheriff leads the way, lights flashing.
We wind behind,
Our teacher train,
Windows down,
Waving,
Smiling,
Calling out— 
(Trying not to cry!)

Beside the road
And hanging out the windows of parked cars,
Our families do the same. 
Bundled up
With faces alight,
A blur of brightly colored coats-hats-mittens-scarves.
Their signs thank us,
Our signs thank them—
Thankful for each other. 

Neighbors pause in walking their dogs,
Perhaps remember when their own kids were in school,
Nodding, waving, appreciating. 
Small faces peek from windows,
(Yes, we’re here to see you!)
A break from what has become the everyday
Of stay at home—
A mobile gathering. 

Not (yet) together—
But no longer apart.
Thank you to Two Writing Teachers Blog, for hosting slice of life every Tuesday. I appreciate the opportunity to write and share with such an amazing community of writers and educators!

10 Comments

  1. shakespearience87

    Thanks for sharing this! We had a teacher parade a few weeks ago and this brought back memories of that (except it was not snowing for us). I loved how you played with punctuation in this — especially your use of parenthesis.

    Like

    1. Amy Ellerman

      Thanks! Here’s the best part. I shared this slice today with my kids doing the classroom slice of life challenge; it’s a small collection of kids in grades K-5 in my building. I asked for feedback on my title, saying that I was looking for suggestions that better reflected what the piece is really about. Received two ideas, from a kindergartener and a first grader: The Heart of the Parade and We’re Never Far Apart(!!!). How awesome are those titles—holy moly. Kids are amazing.

      Like

  2. Fran Haley

    My school did this also, although I didn’t make it there – colleagues told me the parents wept. This parade is a beautiful thing. A real act of love. And in the snow -! Your images are so crisp and clear – it’s like watching a scene in a movie. Pulls on the heartstrings all the way. And, in regard to your comment above: Kids ARE amazing. The never cease to amaze me with their thinking. The single greatest thing we can do for them is to spark it.

    Like

  3. Kathleen Neagle Sokolowski

    This made me cry. Such a poignant and beautiful poem. I love all your description of the moment- I could see it like a movie.

    Like

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