Monday, February 4, 2013


Since the clouds are strewn silver and white from horizon to horizon, today's arboretum walk is apparently about flight--the shift of bird sillouhettes from pine to pine in the drought-thinned thicket, the drift of seeds delicate with fine, false feathers, and the shift of thought from drowsy to reminiscent to remorseful. Any alliterative embellishments are unfortunate leftovers from last night's Gloom, a card game of morbid mayhem that allows one to indulge one's Gorey/PBS Mystery dark side upon a tableful of one's friends. Perhaps that should have made this morning a grey whisper of crows; however, it is not.

Grey taffeta mockingbirds with black and white hems are slipping through the undergrowth and a fidget of tiny brown birds are zipping away from the azalea hill into the trees on the creek bank as I walk through a slow rainfall. Wondering if these large palm fronds would be effective umbrellas, I step under one and look up. Not making it underneath the tight base of the frond, I get a raindrop in the eye. The sharp fringes are not so much effective.

Following the palms through to the prehistoric section, I see that more cycads, etc. are being planted. This means that the frog pond area is under construction and I'm detoured over to the fairy tale pond, where I find a nice, large frog sitting with his face above the water as the rain continues to ring the water like a visible tone from an invisible bell. At the edge, someone has been cleaning up the lower branches of a tree that I don't recognize, save for the Froudian baby goblin frowning from just above the mulch.

The contrast of the flying birds and the falling rain runs like a bar of music through me and I find myself in a very Mumford & Sons mood as the rain drops strike faster and the birds call ever louder. A jangle of grey and a glissando of water and the begging of my own brain to be braver and hardier and less distracted push me to wake up, although I don't feel--standing in the park, in the daylight, shoes on my feet--as if I've been sleeping.

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