He sat on the park bench. Dusk was nearing. Dogs and children were playing in the distance, but he did not notice them, nor did he notice the lilac smell in the air. The world had become a drab black and white photograph that he lived in now, painfully. He sat on the park bench staring at his shoe laces for an extraordinary time. They were untied. He did not have the desire, or the strength to tie them. He just sat in his numbness, staring.
A screech very near startled his stillness. He looked up. A little girl stood crying and pointing in the air. His eyes followed her little finger to a pink spotted balloon floating softly toward the sky. He watched the balloon, momentarily enjoying the color pink. He felt a gust of wind on his left cheek as the balloon went higher. It flew away into the blue granite sky. The child was still crying, and sounds of a consoling mother could be heard. He paused, regarding only for a moment the colors in the park. But, slowly, as if it was too heavy to hold up, his head dropped back down to his shoe laces. He settled back into his black and white silence.