Monday, November 5, 2007

November Dream

So dull and dark are the November days.
The lazy mist high up the evening curled,
And now the morn quite hides in smoke and haze;
The place we occupy seems all the world.
(John Clare, November)

November will never end, and I don't think even Duncan can keep me from wishing away this unendurable month. We sit in my office, Duncan pining near the window, wondering why his walk came so late and passed so quickly, and I can't keep my thoughts from blue skies and long walks in the heat. Even yesterday, which was still November, seems an eternity ago and lovelier than today.

I left work late and like many others, was shocked to see the sun had set and darkness had taken root; the last of the golden light in the west seemed little more than a dusting across the horizon. I hurried home and didn't even bother changing my clothes before taking Duncan out. The park, which has been filled with junior footballers sine August, was dark and empty and we saw no one, passed no other dogs, couldn't even hear the high school marching band practicing the same songs they've practiced for months while we walked. I felt Rip Van Winkle-ish, as if I'd been asleep a long time but wanted nothing more than to lay my head back down on the pillow. The darkness seemed like water and not even the cold could energize me, nor the restless tug of Duncan pulling ahead of me. We circled once and came back through the gates. A rabbit darted past us but I saw only a white smudge across my field of vision and wouldn't have thought of it again if Duncan hadn't strained on his leash after it.

When I close my eyes I think of the last red leaves on the tree hanging over my patio, which only yesterday seemed safe in the warmth of the sun and the steely blue of a faraway sky. Tonight the leaves are just shadows, dry and brittle, and I can't wait for this November dream to end.

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