There are things I refuse to take for granted, little things that are so easily overlooked, like the sun still shining when I got home, still bright and high, beaming a blinding gold off the snow and ice. For too long Duncan and I have walked in the dark after I return home from work, and for too long it's been easy to neglect the stories he creates when we walk, to grow tired and lazy in the dark of my apartment after a long day. But this evening the sun was there, glorious and blazing, refusing to be ignored despite the cold and treachery of the ice.
We were standing in a grove of juniper trees, Duncan sniffing and taking his time, examining each of the spots other dogs had visited, thrusting his nose deep into the powder or standing under a bough bent low under the weight of the snow, watching as flakes, and occasionally entire clumps, drifted down onto his upturned face. After a bit he pulled away causing my shoulder to brush a branch where the long silver icicles, burning with the last of the sun's light, grazed their long bodies against each other, whispering a delicate chime reserved for our ears ears only. Duncan looked up at them, his eyes wide and full of wonder, as did I, and for a very long time we played, knocking them softly together and marveling at their tone and the hushed bell-like luster of the melody ringing across and through the snow and glistening needles.
Such a simple thing but the highlight of my day, a refrain I will never be able to recreate nor forget.