Thursday, September 21, 2006

The Leaves Are Starting To Fall..

Autumn is coming. Walking up Ditching Road this morning, I felt it in the breeze, saw it in the cracked orange leaves that circled round my knees and bag.

This morning I am a girl of the sea. Sweet and strong with a head full of wonder, an eye for light: I sparkle on water. Tomorrow I may be Andalucia, with a body of blood like aged red wine from the cellar, a heart of ardent rapture, sitting by a ring of sand, watching the bull toss his head with bleeding pride.

Yesterday was a bad day. Today, so far, my heart is alive and breathing once again, remembering it can take care of itself, and that, in the midst of pain, there is still love, if you can persist to find it. This can take some looking.

But as there is a season about to end, there is another beginning. I will make it a new beginning. And to mark it, this Sunday I hold A Tea Party on the beach, with fancy frocks and friends to say goodbye to what has, in many ways, been a memorable and beautiful season.

And I am not quite ready for snow, but the thought of chocolate coloured days and walks by the green cooling river fill me with a new joys. Trips to London to see the new Rodin collection, Tate Modern, my sister and the Thames. Kittywakes calling from Seaford cliffs, quiet afternoons writing, berries and hot tea late at night.

And the beach will change its flavour, but will still be there, chugging and churning, my solace in this greedy busy town, peace in the burning car headlights.

Who knows what will actually become of this Autumn, but perhaps I don't have to opt for complete hibernation just yet, or can do so in another way. I think they call it Recuperation. I call on all my animals of the forest, of the ice, of the road. Let them take care of this little soul when it grows littler, when the rocks start falling and I need a place to hide, some fur and strong paws to bury my face in.

And all being well, it won't break my heart to see Mum in the new nursing home where she'll soon be residing, with her child-like vision, the flower pots on the patio. I am so glad there will be flowers for her there. And though it feels a devastation to think we all might be in for another long haul, because we know she will not get better, but could stay in some twilight world for years to come, I am glad she will be settled somewhere where there are no nurses, too busy to give my mother a second glance, to really look after her, where I can leave behind wards, the clinical smell, the dreadful taste of death and withering in my mouth. At least there are hills there.

And I have joined a Writing Circle. And I soon begin a little writing course. And life moves onward. I never stay the same. And even in one day, who I am shifts and changes. I am Clare, and I am reborn with every tear, every pain.


laurel said...

autumn is my favorite time of year...restless change, sailing on the wind...whichever way she happens to blow you...
I'm glad you've made peace with the season in your own fashion...

bereweber said...

your words are so nice and powerful that they leave me speechless (writerless i guess) sometimes, and the comments are dull but sincere, you know?

it was strange for me, many miles away from you, how the first leaf of autumm felt just yesterday, not one day before not one day after... and it felt gentle and soft on the street pavement leaving a sweet soul aftertaste, the autumn came
the season changes, every second we slip away, you are changing clare but thank god also you are always clare...

wherever there are flowers there is life, so your mom will be ok, she will also, like us and the leaves change

take care and good luck at the writing class, post the homework ;) and don’t cheat much on the tests…

clare said...

laurel - yes, I think I am starting to make peace with it. It's such a poignant but comforting time, Autumn, so rich. The colours are gorgeous this time of year.

bere - hah! Your comments are always sincere and NEVER dull.