robert a. dollesin
In the park, Jenny’s father used newspaper to make her a kite. I asked my mother to do the same. Instead, she stalked the hedges, walking alongside them until she spotted a blue dragonfly. She positioned her fingers above the insect while it rested. In one quick motion she snatched it by its wings.
I watched its tail curl and its spindly forelegs claw the air as my mother looped thread around its thick neck. Then she placed the wooden spool into my hand. “Here. Fly this.”
Jenny dropped her kite and stared in awe as my dragonfly buzzed skyward. She begged me to let her try. But since I have no father to craft old newspapers into boats or hats or kites, I ignored Jenny and maneuvered the dragonfly with pride.
Inevitably, though, the dragonfly’s head popped off and the thread slackened. Jenny laughed, picked her kite up off the grass, and ran with it across the lawn. I reeled the thread in and sat on the grass. While pinching apart the dragonfly’s tail, I listened to the paper tail of Jenny’s kite flap in the breeze and watched my mother laugh with yet another strange man.
Robert A. Dollesin
The Dinner Party