About a flower boy

Sitting on a bench while waiting for the 10:00 am mass to end, I saw the frequent flower boy; the plastic-wrapped bundles of daffodils he was sheepishly cradling were the only sight of vibrancy on his grubby get-up. He must have been a boy of eight, oil-skinned and skinny, clad on a graying white shirt and red shorts painted with soot. He pallidly stood, his back against the postern, and waited for potential and empathetic buyers. But despite the direly pleading filth for a much-needed bath, his eyes were starkly clear and brimming of stoic luminosity. Hoping to better grasp the dull radiance of his windows, I stared at him but he did not meet my gaze. Instead, he was watching a family of four beside me.

The mother piously stood behind her children. Her eldest was sidled by his two younger brothers, relentlessly tugging for them to be hoisted in midair. It was a good kind of distracting to see how playful and close they were to each other. I looked back at the flower boy and he just gawked at them. I can tell he was not simply ogling on their immaculate garments and squeaking rubber shoes.  I pondered on what he might be thinking at that moment and as the words condensed from my mind, they threaten to precipitate from my eyes.

He would have wondered on having a brother; to have someone enthusiastically lift him up and ready his arms for the assured nest to fall. He would have marveled at the tingling echoes of their laughter as they play along, definitely deafening his whizzing stomach. He would have reminded himself on how comfort feels like, as this unfair penury had left him numb. He would have wished for a mother; not exactly knowing if he came into existence through one. He would have fantasized on how it was like to have a family or he will continue dreaming of it as he lulled to sleep on cold pavements…

 

I snapped out of my thoughts and recoiled to myself, “How could I complain?”

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