Teddy bear to the moon

Teddy bear to the moon

It was a cold Thursday night when I was walking home from work, tired and longing for a hot bowl of spaghetti. The same people smiled and waved as I passed by. The same wind blew on my face. The same moon followed me with every step I took.

I turned a corner a few blocks from my house and kept my pace until I saw someone standing in the middle of the street. A girl, shy of five. I’d seen her before; she lived in the blue house off to the side, the one that had the depressing, yellowing lawn. She stood in a purple onesie and held a teddy bear in her arms. As I approached her she smiled and tossed the bear to the ground. I guessed it was one of those fetch-my-toy games that some kids like, so I decided to get the bear and tell her to go to her house. But just as I was a few feet from the bear, I halted because it was moving.

Floating, actually. Up it went like a balloon filled with helium, and I stared as it climbed, higher and higher. I glanced at the girl and she was just gawking up at the bear, too. Did she make the bear float, somehow? I turned back to the teddy and watched its small, dark body going straight for the pale moon above, and after several seconds, the bear was gone from sight.

The girl grinned at me and spun around. She bolted up the dry lawn, opened the door to her house, and lingered behind it for a couple of seconds before grinning one last time and slamming it shut. Then I was alone. Alone in the middle of the street, all quiet, with a floating teddy bear somewhere up in the heavens above my head. I looked up at the sky, at the stars, at the moon, and shook my head hard. Then I made my way home.


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