This tree flaunted their jewel-studded limbs and lured me in for a closer look. We both knew it was sap. We both knew another name for sap is precious gem.
These trees didn’t mean to fall in with the “wrong” crowd. The crowd just showed up and, for a while, it felt good to belong.
We continue our dying as we hold those almost done. The ground knows there’s no difference between us but the lie of time.
The sun came out for a few minutes and I ran outside to warm my cheeks and know that the world is still full of color. Then went home and closed my business again, adding pandemic to the things I hate about the holiday season.
Let my throat be angry. And the corner of 49th & Clay. And the disembodied radio rattle. Taken inch by inch, there is more calm than fury. Soft wind, cool water, full belly.
Wandering, I ended up on a dead end street at the back corner of an old mud-brown apartment complex. The chair invited me to sit (as chairs often do). Rest for a second. The view is unspectacular and rarely seen.
The forest has grown its wet winter coat and invited in its wet winter guests. The room is gloriously crowded. Everything is cold, soft and clean.
If the cat has cooperated, I still wake up pleased with the work sleep has done on my body. I still push out of the house at least once and grow thankful for all the wide, unheated air. But I also feel pulled back to my den, eager to have the world part of the day behind me. I move through my den hours easily now despite all the denials and distortions. But the street lamps still get cursed every night at 4:30. My hands still long for other people’s skin.
Maybe this will be the last picture of leaves. Maybe not. So many beautiful deaths to admire. So many wild and sloppy wakes to attend.
A runner passes as I press into my toes, arm up, and take a picture of the caged window dressed in rain. I don’t hear her breath, only the thin gravel scraping beneath her feet.
Gratitude for the lives (of humans, rivers, seed pods) that carried me here. Sorrow for the lives (of humans, horses, rain clouds) that carried me here.
Yesterday I walked through my smashed and spray painted neighborhood wishing all vandals were writers and artists instead. Yesterday a man in a flag-waving truck drove down our boarded up street and yelled at my partner You’re a mask-wearing idiot. Yesterday, this van sat in a nearby lot, telling everyone who passed, destruction can be beautiful.
Do I thank the non-dream bodies for their dream body time? The one I haven’t seen in ages, the one I haven’t seen in years. We move in miniature through mountain pass and forest at the speed of a dreaming breath. Everyone arrives safely. The company is good.
I don’t want to keep going on about fallen leaves, but the leaves are still accumulating. Some good neighbor has to show up and make space for things to flow. But if the leaves are too much, the streets flood. Everywhere you look, another murky pond.
I was lucky enough to catch a matinee starring this white crab spider. Crouched behind my young magnolia tree, I settled in to watch her dance and whisper encore, encore.