The boys a few houses down are grown now. They no longer walk single-file to the corner where the school bus used to meet them. You just don't see them much anymore. They must be off in their own cars. Neither will remember much about their path in life when they were what 10 and 11? 11and 12? Two brothers I don’t think I ever saw walking side-by-side. They must have been adversaries from early on, adhering to the established pecking order. I saw them at the point just before they stopped coming outdoors after school and were probably busy being mortal enemies in one of their virtual reality games. And I’ll remember them before they went indoors. Before the grip of adolescence took hold. Before they lost and gained back their balance on the old stone wall out front. Where one went the other followed.
if I learn
the oriole’s whistle