As the longest hour circles around the night, two monkeys watch the stars melt, the sun rise. It’s going to be a long day, they can tell already, what with the way Allison the angel they’ve come to know, begins her complaining about how her work on earth is unappreciated. Later that afternoon while they’re relaxing by a park fountain, she informs them, no one even sees me. It makes me feel alienated. Since she’s right, what could they possibly say that would make her feel better? Even the water glistening in the sunlight offers no comfort.
Then when the day is late and another hour seems to be pointless and lost, when lying there in the grass and watching the fish swim through the air as wave after wave of lawn rolls past, a screen door slams, snapping them from their reverie and a little boy bounds toward them, rushing for the swings. There are other children and balls and jump ropes and splashing water and baseball bats and bicycles and tennis racquets and more children running in ever widening circles and laughter and screams and fish. The moment they have been waiting for is about to happen. As the boy buzzes through them unseeing, they feel the whisper of centuries and the small breeze of years flutter past their faces. Allison is the first to say: I don’t know why it doesn’t bother you guys. This is driving me crazy.
She gives us one of her looks and flies off after the little boy who has changed his mind about going on the swings and heads for the largest slide in the park, the one that’s a silver arm of light reaching for the sky. The two monkeys take their places: one at the bottom of the slide, and the other at the top. In the space of an airless second,the street noise, the laughter, the wind and the rushing sunlight, all of it is rearranged in the stillness that surround this boy’s life. And for the first time today, Allison smiles.