Yasmine Mariam Kloth
It's cold for spring and we're standing by the National Monument in Washington D.C., shivering in April; we’re small beside this obelisk that stretches tall and thin like kite string. The soft gray clouds stitched like a quilt above our heads can't keep us warm and I wonder what it would feel like to lay back against the arms of this sky.
They've come from all over, so many people across the muddied lawn, their bodies blurry as I squint my eyes through the mist. They unpack fabric in bright colors that has been folded into tiny squares and when they've opened them up into impossible shapes, into ice cream cones, into rainbows, and dinosaurs it's like they've unpacked a small piece of their dreams.
Your two-year-old body is reaching for a kite that's hanging in the wind and for a moment it looks like you're setting it free; for a moment you're the anchor to the wind and to all the tiny toys floating like boats at sea. You want them all, and you're chasing them in a zig zag, turning on point to the next beautiful thing.
“Mommy, I want one!” you shout.
grab your hand to slow you down, to tell you we'll go buy one, but you set off running on the green grass, soggy from the rains the night before, shouting into the wind what I can barely hear, and know I can't give you: “Mommy! I want one from the sky!”
About the Author: Yasmine Mariam Kloth's work has aired on NPR and appeared on npr.org. She co-translated a book of poetry by the French-Canadian author Mona Latif Ghattas called "Sails For Exile," and published pieces for the now shuttered blog "The Honest Mom Project." By day she works in health communications, by night she writes. She lives in Cincinnati, OH with her husband and young daughter.