Saturday, April 5, 2008

Ghost Games

Some days are too good to end, the air too warm, bleeding into the night. We walked this morning, we walked this afternoon, and after a long play with Khan down at The Glen, we ventured to the park and back. But even being home and tired isn't enough so we've found ourselves sitting on the patio, sipping Chamomile tea and breathing in the April air.

Warm weather brings phantoms. From my patio I can hear them playing in the park––echoes of laughter from the darkness––and if I squint I can even see them, thin shadows running back and forth across the fields. Bowles is mostly deserted this time of night with only a few cars crossing every couple of minutes but the voices are continuous, heedless of the hour. Duncan leans through the patio into the sound, his ears rising as the night catches and plays phantom calls. He cocks his head when he sees them, stick shapes chasing back and forth between the trees on the wide expanse of grass we walk every day. We listen and watch, and sometimes we can see a flash of green––although sometimes it is red, dull and not very bright, little more than a dim slice of movement––or even bright yellow. The voices rise up and the shadows run again, the sound of their quick steps an imagined stampede we almost think we can feel trembling the earth at our feet. They always make me smile and I wonder, if I came from another time, what would I think of the glow-in-the-dark Ultimate Frisbee game that has taken over the park, the nearly formless shapes of the players, ghosts under the orange street lamps, crossing back and forth calling out to one another, laughing as they move? I remember days that don't seem all that long ago when late still seemed early, when my night started as the nights of most people wound down. Duncan watches the glowing disc and wants to chase it, grip it in his jaws and carry it away, his head and tail high. I merely want to remember what it was like to run and play without thought.

Spring is the time when the world––our half of it, at least––comes back to life. But every Spring I find myself remembering Springs of old when I didn't feel quite so tired or my obligations seemed nearly as heavy. It would be nice to forget tomorrow and run across the street and join those shadows in play, if only to remind myself that I am not a shadow but still very much muscle and bone and breath.
April is a good time to play. I think we'll do that tomorrow.

1 comment:

Lori said...

I remember some spring and early summer days, tired and filthy from hanging out in the garden "helping" my dad, and how the dewy twilight grass felt cool on my dirty bare feet.
Love your picture!