Saturday, October 31, 2009


These past few cloudy rainy weeks have drained light from our days which shrink into blackness at either end. Black as blood pudding, which I have neither seen nor tasted, but clings to the roof of my mouth in vivid imagining. Black as the cat, like blindness. But, ah, what blindness does for the sense of smell.
I stood in the drive at the blackest moment of the day, 6:45 a.m. The porch light enlivened by a motion detector blinked on and off, then finally failed and plunged the dogs and I into blindness. The warm air became chaotic with information. First sleepy, then soapy, tidal, almost, as atomizing winds off the Pacific swept in hundreds of miles from the coast to this valley in the foothills. The new warmth after many cold days conjured spring, or a least the trust that spring will come.
A tannic bite driven out of the rattled Lombardy poplar leaves clips the end off October. Oh, oval October ends shattered and scattered in the gentle rot of leaves. How can this buttery rot smell so fresh? How can the bears’ footprints be made visible? How can the silent birds heaving sighs be heard through all this blackness but by scent?
Added in layers: still a pinkish rose; the chunky orange pumpkins just before decay; the folded warmth of the blanket still clinging to my hair as I stand in the dark garden asking how does birth eat away at death like worms, as worms? How does this degeneration access and disperse such a sweetness in such a blackness?
Where are my keys?
I fumble blindly in a darkness rich with information, except for the answer to the question:
Where are my keys?