"What do you plan to do with your one, wild, precious life?" -Mary Oliver

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

One Lonely Sparrow

The sky darkened to the south across Mill Creek and the mucklands and the wind stirred the treetops with the change in the weather. Lightning forked across the sky from Lake Huron to Van Dyke. The cattle huddled under a tree for shelter. What do they know? One lonely sparrow fought the updraft above the creek and twirled across the sky, tossed and turned like a runaway kite. The rains came, gentle gentle, in contradiction to the raging heavens. This is my world. This is Boyd's world (Black River, novel in progress).

It has remained "in progress" for the summer as I am pulled into the garden: weeding, planting, and transplanting, trucking fresh produce to market, canning and harvesting and caring for the elders, and the day job hangs around my neck like an anvil. It's enough to make one wish for winter. I wish for winter and long nights at the keyboard, honing a story, nailing a query, finding an agent to be my friend, taking the anvil off from around my neck.

But then there's the pond...


Secluded and deep and, yes, full of bass and catfish and blue gill for the lone family angler. After a hot day in the garden, I like to go back and strip on the beach and jump in. There's a raft floating in the middle, the perfect spot to stop and catch your breath. I climb the ladder and stretch out on the weathered planks to admire the cloud formations. Hawks float overhead and then a vulture dares to circle to see if I'm dead.

I'm not, so beat it.

Back in the water, something nibbles my side, and I scream like the little girl the pond brings out in me. I have a definite hickey in the middle of my ribs. I was probably kissed by a blue gill. There are worse things in life.

16 comments:

Talli Roland said...

LOVE! Loved the hickey, and the last line. Great piece of writing, Yvonne.

Wine and Words said...

How do you get the anvil off your neck in winter? I, unfortunately, have to work year round. *sigh*

I hear you Yvonne. Love your pond. I really need one.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Talli,
It actually scared the bejesus out of me. Thanks!

Annie,
Well, I still have to work but not in the garden, which takes all my spare time in summer. Everyone needs a pond, like an inside room.
Thanks for commenting.

Anthony Duce said...

I envy you the pond and the fish’s kiss. The writing is wonderful, even if worked in around the other stuff that makes up a life.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Tony,
Thanks!

Lydia K said...

I loved that little excerpt, how the "wind stirred the trees."

Keep writing!

Pet said...

Certainly there are worse things in live :-)
I cannot find a single thing in your summer "schedule" that I would change for winter :-)

jbchicoine said...

Ha! Seems as if summer has peaked and is trickling away everywhere...You paint such a lovely image, Yvonne...makes me feel sad that summer is dwindling...

Yvonne Osborne said...

Lydia,
Hi! Thanks.

Pet,
I guess you're right, but I guess it's also why I love the change in seasons. But I do love summer. Sure do.

JB,
Thank you so much. Yes summer is surely dwindling. It already feels different. Thanks for stopping and commenting.

Taryn Tyler said...

:) I'm a wee bit jealous of your pond. You make it sound so mystical.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Taryn,
It is rather mystical, now that you mention it. You never know what's stirring in the deep, and I've seen giant turtles before on the surface, and turtles are mystical. Thanks!

Jemi Fraser said...

Love it! There are definitely worse things in life! :)

Yvonne Osborne said...

Jemi,
Thanks! Yeah,I guess that was an understatement. Thank you for stopping by and commenting.

Ed Pilolla said...

haha:) the blue gill kiss was a great line. sounds like boyd's world is getting dark. sorry it's an anvil around your neck. it's a good, dark read.

Yvonne Osborne said...

Hi Ed,
Thanks! Boyd's world is, well, convoluted. Thank you for commenting. Good to see you.

foldingfields said...

Man, I needed a good dose of your writing. Thank you.
This was fab. Sarah xx