Pia Z. Ehrhardt's fiction and non fiction.

Posts from the “City Park” Category

What I Meant.

Posted on March 31, 2016

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While I waited at the traffic light on Canal Street, a toddler straddled his mother’s hip and kicked off his tiny red sandal. He looked down, wiggled his foot, but didn’t have words. I was driving home from the office with my music on loud. My family had just returned to New Orleans after living for four months in Houston. A continuous rusty waterline cut through buildings and houses. We lived a mile away and on a ridge. The woman stood at the bus stop dressed in turquoise scrubs, and her toddler waved his sippy cup at whoever might notice

 

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I WANTED TO SIT CLOSER: Crimewatcher.

Posted on September 10, 2015

We’d been back in New Orleans for just two months when our house was burglarized, and my husband, Malcolm’s, car was stolen. It was February, 2006, Mardi Gras season and freezing. Our son Andrew had gotten home at 11:30 p.m. and he’d not locked the back door. Someone jumped our eight-foot fence, walked through the kitchen and into the front hall, took money out of Malcolm’s wallet and picked up the keys to his SUV. What he didn’t take: a cold beer from the fridge, the Bose radio, the cigar box on the counter stuffed with pocket change. The thief’s stealing was focused: cash and wheels. And he left the back door wide open, which is how Malcolm knew something was wrong the next…

The Owls Of Solomon Place.

Posted on September 1, 2013

In May of 2013 a great horned owl fell into our backyard while I unloaded grocery bags from my car. I froze and kept a distance. We’d been watching the family; this looked like the female. She and her mate had made a nest in the live oak behind our house, or, rather, they’d been squatting in a nest built by black crows who daily mobbed them with swoops and scolds. Babies—we counted two—had hatched. At night, one parent guarded the clutch while the other hunted in the park across the street. A red clay finial on the roof of our house served as a lookout perch, or the crooked telephone pole. The owl sighted prey, its thick head on a swivel. My husband…

Ode to City Park

Posted on July 9, 2012

On Tuesday and Thursday mornings I walk in City Park with two women my age, friends I made during our evacuation to Houston after New Orleans filled with water. We lived in the same complex with our sons for their fall semester of high school, while our husbands stayed back to work. Evelyn and Joyce have dogs they walk: Trudy and Walter. I don’t because our chocolate Lab, Eddie, died last year from a bad heart, although the pain in his hips is why we put him down. He’d started stumbling, but he’d be so quick to pop up like he didn’t want me to notice that I played along. City Park’s managing nicely, considering it sat in standing, filthy water for three weeks.…