This sunny, gorgeous weekend was a high school ritual completely unfamiliar to me — the fall rites of Homecoming. The girls’ varsity soccer team played first, followed by the boys. One boy — young man, really, on the cusp of adulthood — arrived with a couch in the back of his pickup. His teammates promptly carried it out and set up living room cheering quarters at the far end of the field.
Unlike the high school I attended (way back sometime in the 20th century), there’s no cheerleaders. The boys pull their weight in playing and cheering — and the girls do, too.
Near the end of this long afternoon of playing, a tiny girl in a polka-dot coat wandered over to keep my older daughter and I company. She picked up a crumpled leaf from the grass and handed it to me, full of wonder.
Happiness… even comes to the boulder
in the perpetual shade of pine barrens,
to rain falling on the open sea,
to the wineglass, weary of holding wine.