From a collection of 100-word stories & wonders

The timeless joy inspired by a boy’s random encounter with a gnarly old tree eludes a mother and father. Photo by Steve Finegan.


“I worry about Jimmy,” said Molly. “He doesn’t walk in a straight line; he wanders.” Jack refilled her glass. “All kids wander, Moll, it’s what they do.” Molly sipped her wine. “He’s got to learn to get from point A to point B. He’s got to learn to focus.” Jack sat beside her. “Oh, he’s focused. Remember that picnic? We had to search, found him playing king of the castle in that gnarly tree. He’d been there hours! Time? Right out the window. That’s focus.” “On what?” scoffed Molly. “On joy, hon. It’s just we’ve forgotten how.” “Oh,” said Molly.

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