The Little Faery

 

She crouches in the dirt,
Among the legs of her grown-ups,
A singular child,
Clearly treasured
But momentarily unnoticed

By her mom
And her dad
And her auntie
By her uncle
Whose knees are being tickled
By the tips of her wire and mesh wings.

The hem of her frilly pink princess dress
Trails behind her in the dust
Hiked up in front to expose
The yellow pedal pushers
That she wears underneath,
Clearly a mother’s precaution
A familiarity and a surrender
To her little faery’s tomboy tendencies.

Around the girl,
In the shade of the big pine tree
The men talk lightly,
The uncle nearly spilling his beer,
As the father tells him a joke.
Mother and auntie
Are deep in a conversation,
Well-coiffed heads bent close,
Eyes on the crowd but not seeing.

All the while,
With water bottle in hand
And yellow knees up nearly to her ears,
The faery focuses
On the universe that exists
In the gravel beneath her sandaled feet

I am captivated,
Across the gulf of hot afternoon air
And passing fair-goers.

In the briefest of breaks
Between customers,
I alone am blessed with the intimacy
Of her moment

She is watching something,
Something tiny
That I cannot see
Something that needs a drink

So she tips her plastic vessel
And carefully pours a tiny dribble
For the seed?
An ant?
A beetle?
An imagined microscopic town?

She, a mini-giant bestowing
A rain shower,
A boon
On this parched day.

Her head turns
And in her crouch
She duck-walks
A foot or two
To another spot,
Carefully dribbling again.

She pauses
And watches,
And duck-walks again.
She dribbles again
And smiles,

Satisfied,
Her gift apparently received in gratitude

Then the crowd surges,
New customers come to my counter
My attention is drawn away
And when I next look,
The little faery is gone.

©2016 Annette Meserve

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