Thursday morning

He cries out for me at too early thirty, tangled in blankets, surrounded by hard books and plush animals, hair ruffled and fuzzy.  He is a bouquet of wild loveliness.
Predawn he plays purposefully, still and focused and calm, but before long his uninhibited enthusiasm awakens, his activity becomes intense and erratic.  He begs for eggs, calls for Tucker, looks for his favorite frog book, complains about his wet bottom... and then pushes them all away, No eggie, No Da-tuck, No book, No dipe-y, in the manner of a two year old who suddenly doesn't want what he just wanted.
At the grocery he gets attention from fellow shoppers who comment on his camouflage shoes, on the toy camera around his neck, on his orange hair, who give him cheek squeezes and a sheet of stickers.  He gives them each a look he could cut steak with.  He will not speak until our strawberries are bagged and the automatic doors close behind us, Guy, big guy.  Stickies.  Bye Guy!
In the car he covers his hands with colorful circles and once we're home he pulls one off and presents it to me.  For Mama he says as he attaches it to my shorts.  By the time I have the door unlocked and get the bags inside he is under the outdoor table with the pint of berries, a single bite taken from the bottom of each before it's returned to the container.  At lunch he is in and out of his chair, sitting, standing, upside down, watermelon in one hand and Tuck's peach pit in the other, fruit juice dripped in figure eights across the patio.
After they eat, he and his brother make mud soup.  They mix dirt and water, stir in ground cherries and holly berries, fern leaves and tiger lily stalks before shoving the concoction in their green plastic dinosaur's over-sized mouth.  Chomp, chomp.
They both need a bath, and I know although he won't eat his and will instead dip it in warm water and watch it melt, I entice them in with fruit popsicles.  We read Down By the Bay and Goodnight Goodnight Construction Site on new blue sheets before he naps.  He cuddles with both books and with his blanket and closes his eyes, nestled into the spot I picked him from hours earlier.


rht said...

I know that sharp look and I love the way it eventually melts into a softer, sweet smile.

Christy said...

I love reading about your adorable boys. I know they probably wear you smooth out, but you're doing a fantastic job. xo