Saturday, November 09, 2013

leaf it alone

As I watched Onondaga Creek swirl before me, after heavy rains, the waters muddy and leaf-laden, over by Plum Street, standing near those gorgeous, black industrial pedestrian bridges, I fixated on one greenish-yellow maple leaf, caught in the stream, carried along, floating, twirling. And I thought: why that leaf? What about the other leaves and twigs? And for how long do they pass before me?

Thursday, November 07, 2013

November nuances

Several readers got nervous when they saw my post about the calendar turning to September, "nervous" not being entirely an accurate adjective, but suffice it to say that they were concerned, caring, considerate. They feared I might be on some sort of psychic shelf, a ledge, a place of morose departure. I assured them then that it was all about transition, turning the page, if not a chapter, or even a whole new book. So, since then, more days have tumbled by, more seconds ticked, and so on. If I say, I'm doing fine, will you doubt it, since men tend to assert that claim so readily despite the odds? Well, my doing fine is fine enough, embracing all of it: pain, change, renewal, reinvention, loss, gain, discovery, recovery, penury, luxury, song, silence. The leaves fall off the trees by the end of November, though at first many of those dappled delights cling on to the branch. But the bare branches have a stark beauty all their own. My friend the late Raymond Davidson, a New Yorker magazine artist, used to tell me he loved the simple line of those branches in preference to the picture-postcard leafy scenes. It's all all right. It's all there, all here.