That one month (it was September)
our hearts looked squarely at each other
Mine cried out Yes! and clapped its hands
And yours tried to think of a kind way
to excuse itself.
This little rabbit
Has a terrible habit
Of picking his nose and flinging it.
This little heron
Was never preparing
Preferring instead on winging it.
Yesterday I compared you to the Sea and you protested
but the Sea is moody with turbulent depths fed by drowned sorrows.
I sit staring at the Sea, trying and trying to love it enough.
Today I sat by the Sea and wrote a poem about your smile –
how it leaps unexpectedly to your face, radiating an innocent joy
and how, when it appears through something I’ve said or done,
I’m humbled, and feel weak.
I never want to settle. I want to live a tidal life, giving in to the push and pull, slowly waxing and waning, always transitioning from one state of beauty to the next.
Kipling considered being packed in my bag so I had to explain baggage allowances to him. I mean, I’m underweight in both suitcase and carry on and between the two could actually pack my pooddle-cross senior rescue dog. But part of the point of all of this is to be in a situation where I’m only beholden to myself for the first time in my adult life. No spouse, no children, no pet, no committee or boss or houseplants even.
Actually I think I’m going to betray myself on that and join a Folk Music Ontario committee this weekend. When I return to my life and my dog and my houseplants (if they live) I’ll be joining a few more things. I’m so involved in this life, but not committed. No more skimming the surface. I think. Maybe. We’ll see.
In the meantime I had to say goodbye to my doggie today – it didn’t phase him. I said goodbye to my daughter this morning and to my son this afternoon and then I sat in the hotel lobby and tried not to cry. They’ll be fine, good, great. They have interesting, exciting lives. They have excellent, loving partners who keep them supplied with support and hugs. And with computers in our pockets, how far away can anyone actually go?
Four days of folk music and then indefinite Europe.
I’m ready to go.
Autumn began at 9:54 pm last night; day and night were equals.
Around the same time, I entered my fiftieth year. Today is my 49th birthday proper -September 23rd – but as I was born around 3AM in Ireland, my birthday started around 10 o’clock last night while the seasons were in flux.
I can feel them shifting. I love the transitions; when day gives way through dusk to night, when affection tumbles into love, the transport to other worlds when the theatre lights dim and then rise.
I love the relief autumn brings after the sun-baked madness of summer. Just as I think I perhaps can’t bear more heat, can’t handle the long days and restless nights, have sown and grown and harvested enough and want instead to savour and contemplate – along comes the fall.
Bring me the Fall Fairs, painted trees, cozy sweaters and the longing to cuddle for warmth in the evenings. Bring me full larders and the sound of crows in the mornings. Bring me the scent of winter in the night air, mixed with the certainty that there is time yet before winter arrives.
It’s not that I don’t like summer. I wake each summer day excited to feel the sun on my skin. There’s little sleep in the summer; the long days are full and the night is scant. Patios, beaches, deep green trees, fragrant flowers, song birds and music around campfires. I adore summer: I can’t keep it from passing.
The seasons follow one another inexorably and interminably. I breath in the beautiful ache of the transitions. I anticipate and relish the favours of each interval, allowing their changes to wash over and through me until I feel I perhaps can’t take any more and lo, the next cusp arrives.