My childhood is gone
until something suddenly calls it back—
my mother’s favorite perfume,
a country song about falling in love,
coffee steaming in the pot,
snow falling outside the window,
then I’m little again
watching flakes catch the glass.
It’s Halloween and I’m dressed
with a snow suit under my costume.
Frozen leaves crunch along the sidewalk.
My parents are still so young,
and I wonder if they feel lost
like I sometimes did at their age.
As a boy, I’m not worried.
Everything that will hurt me
has not happened yet.
I put a flashlight in the candy pail,
its jack-o-lantern face
lighting my way into the darkness.