Forty One Days Later

I’m in Newtown, CT and am being reminded of how deep the casual greeting, “How are you?” can be. Here, smiles are exchanged tentatively. “Hey, how ya doing?” in the grocery store is a real inquiry, and people are listening for subtext, careful, sensitive. We are woven and suspended together in this moment in history. Signs on all stores say, “WE ARE SANDYHOOK,” and you know it’s true for all of America. The gaze falls on a child in the crosswalk and lingers with sadness and affection on the image of that little hand in the adult one, so trusting.  The town looks beautiful in the extreme cold. The creek over in Sandy Hook (an adorable part of town) is frozen over. Down the street, orange cones block the entrance to the Elementary School. A grey SUV stands sentinel with its lights on, guarding the premises.  A police officer driving an unmarked car approaches, gets out, moves the cones, and drives in and out of the sight. “Investigation,”  I think. The people who live across the street quietly collect floral tributes and teddy bears that mourners are still leaving. I drive home and make soup for my sister.


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