Monday, September 28, 2009

the pros and cons of getting out of the house

The summer is over. Granted, it's a beautiful day today, the birds are singing, and last night I saw another firefly. Two of them, in fact, one on each side of the lawn. I've never known them to linger so long.

Still, the summer is over. I can tell in the bug sound in the woods, where locusts have given way to crickets. I can tell in the trees, where a shimmer of red and yellow hide among the green leaves and hint at the explosion of colour to come. I can tell in the breeze, where a chill is on the air, even if I don't yet feel it on my skin. I taste it, somehow.

Tomorrow is my first day of class, so of course I've been dreaming of classrooms and teachers and lost lessons and waking up in the middle of the night to lie there, sleepless. Around me, a slowly-accumulating clutter has begun to irritate me. The picture frame that houses the couple shot of a couple that is no more. A slowly growing stash of knit baby clothes. A chemo cap knit for the wife of a friend whose cancer has killed her hopes of a baby. Another knitting project, almost finished, but with a mistake that will require ripping out the left front shoulder before I can resume. As it's a summer top, I doubt I'll be able to wear it this year, but if I don't finish it now, picking it up again next summer will require major study to figure out just how I put it together! Best to finish it now. . . . There's a stack of clothes to go to the thrift shop, and a silk kimono I bought years ago and thought I might finally start to wear. It's a small step to the clothes-to-go pile, but I doubt it will make it. Then, of course, papers and books. A wedding invitation, and a copy of Nana's remember-when's for her memorial service.
I remember Nana always thought the same dragonfly came back every year to skim the pool. "Look! He's back!" she'd cray, and then warn: "He'll sew up your lips if you're not careful."
I don't know why it's so, but going to work outside of the house is likely to result in a reduction of clutter. For one thing, less time to pull out things, get started, and then move on to something else. For another, order in one area of life tends to spill over into others.

Time for a little order.

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