The concrete sidewalk is still wet. He moves his gaze to the flat, brownish grass, then to the flowerbeds. The mulch needs to be replenished. The plants are mostly dormant, but then he sees it: a crocus, the tiniest flower, is smiling back. “Here, look.” He gently touches Shelley’s arm, then points.
“What?” She follows his gesture. “Oh.” Her voice lights up like someone has turned on a light after a long time, like a child has just gotten a puppy on Christmas morning.
“Yes, oh.” Mike chuckles. “Beautiful, ain’t it?” He moves his eyes away from the flower to Shelley’s face. “Strong, resilient, keeps on keeping on.”
Shelley blinks, stares at him for several seconds. She reaches for his age-spotted hand and takes it, squeezes it. “Thank you.”
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