Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Summer's Wake

It's not difficult to notice the dwindling daylight and creeping shadows, the gentle curling and yellowing of the leaves at the tops of the trees that surround the lake and ring the park. Much of our walks of late have been spent cataloging the changes in our top side of the world, a subtle melancholy beginning to flame up in that same part of my chest which only a few months ago seemed more effervescent than it had in a very long time. I spend the evenings with Duncan measuring the lengths of shadows, gauging the coolness of the evening, watching the familiar summer constellations peek out through the lowering sky in different places, while those I haven't seen in months appear more prominently, almost like an aged and unwelcome relative peering through a window to see if anyone is home. The sun has dropped and on the far side of the lake as we turn directly into the light, now softer and kinder, we take fewer steps before gray-cloaked shade wraps around us, cooling our skin and wiping the squint from our eyes. All things have their time and the time of Summer is withering like the leaves and brown seeds in the Linden and Russian Olive trees, like the wake the lone pelican left behind as it trundled across the surface of the lake, its long head bobbing from side to side as though the water it sliced through were thickening around its hidden, webbed feet. The swath it cut caught the last of the daylight, shimmered and spread out, fattening and fattening the further away the big bird swam until it too faded and became smooth and indistinguishable from all the rest. All paths lead forward but eventually even those we have already traversed melt away into nothingness, swallowed by the world and the season.

* Illustration borrowed from Char Roberts

1 comment:

Greg said...

I had no idea that pelicans were found in your part of the world until this summer. I'd always assumed they were more of a shore bird.

They must be amazing to watch.

Don't fear the change of the seasons, my friend. Tho I too, am loathe to see the winter's return...I know it means that spring glorious spring isn't too far off, either!