FLUTTERING INTO FALL

Gray skies hinted snow was on the way. In the morning, a cape of white stretched down to 3,500 feet elevation on distant western mountains. It was a magic show. On the ridge reaching above our walls, a blue-gray haze obscured the wrinkled tan slope. In the orchard surrounding us, repeating the staggered schedule that brought blossoms and leaves earlier in the year, leaves now dropped on a similar itinerary. Peach trees, the first to shed their foliage, exposed a bewitching grove of stark black limbs against emerald grass and cobalt sky. This light-filled breach was my own private theater or dance hall, all the more eerie and magical when a cloud settles on the orchard and tunnels seemed to point off in every direction. All too soon browned scales fluttered from the remaining cover — cherries, apricots, pears, plums, apples. At this time of the year, when the dew sparkled, I called the rutted path through the dale my Vale of Many Colored Glasses.

How strenuous the goal of dwelling in your own heart, keeping peace, radiating from that center can be. How difficult also to know your own landscape and resources, and how to “live at home” and not go to town for stimulation. Or was I simply trying to cover too much ground?

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A HUNDRED STEPS TO THE SEA

1 along the shoreline, the heads of two gray seals bob and glisten later, three seals together, lazy and then, a dozen seals basking and lolling ensemble twenty feet out “you never see that” while strolling a ribbon between sand cliff and ocean I try estimating one ladder or stairway from the cottage above later, […]

SEPTEMBER, THE CAPE

Wellfleet, at their grandfather’s two perfect horseshoe crabs adorn the table of the uninhabited house while he’s in Florida in the fridge, Heineken dark “your surprise” – available across the highway Wellfleet and just think oysters or the saltmarsh sunlight breaks through my desire to travel lighter than this unlike the children an array of […]

ON STONE CLEAVED FROM RAMPART

however elegant, talisman bowsprits cast gelatinous shadows along shoreline and then blackened wharf grappling irons of the hull or side gateway expertly, the customs master inspects postgraduate credentials in each captain’s script and assesses the excise due the crew, returning well-off in some dividend of dexterity, superstition, and chance fathoms contempt at the helm some […]

WOULDN’T YOU KNOW

Romanesque and Gothic dragonflies in late afternoon sun, paint peeling imbued with arabesques along another narrow passageway a butterfly, pond with goldfish lily smoldering captive and restless parrot in the vine will not surrender differences easily to dance, slow, delicious as a cigarette under palms and laundry high overhead dangling greenery, curtains a sequence of […]