She shivered in her layers of jackets, hunched over on the park bench. So cold that even the birds dared not sing for fear of cracking their beaks. A bedraggled squirrel flicked his careworn tail, hopping from frozen bundles of dirty gray leaves, to clods of dirt, to pieces of trash embedded in ice. Try as he might to make little to no contact with the ground, even his toes got cold, and he limped over to a concretized tree and jerked his way up and around the trunk and disappeared.
And what happened next? Not much. She rocked a bit, hoping to create warmth by friction, as a nearly empty city bus roared by, its exhaust hanging low to the ground, barely moving in the slipstream. Crabbed fingers clawed the corners of her deepest pocket, but found nothing but lint. She left her hand there, in the inner-most pocket—the lint was warmer, she imagined. In any case, she was too tired to go through the hassle of unwinding her way out, especially when that hand would come out empty.
God, she hated Winter. And it was only October. She hesitated on going to a shelter, but it was either die by Chance COVID, or freeze to death. She groaned and shuffled off as the sun slid behind the urban horizon.
Free Association Writer’s Circle, Prompt = Bundle