“if you often smile, but often don’t smile”

it seems almost wrong to me, that it’s already mid-november. it seemed like summer lasted forever, but all of a sudden everything’s subtly, nearly imperceptibly shifted, started to drift into something new so gently that it took me weeks to notice it. slow changes; first my skin doesn’t burn into spectacular shades of red each time i step outside, & then once in a while a cool breeze finds its way into my back yard. i walk outside & the water left on the grass (brighter green then before- why does grey illuminate the way it does?) is cold.

you know the way air almost has a taste, a certain edge to it? i wait all summer for the day i go down to the mailbox & feel that edge disappear. sometimes it’s still so hot the pavement almost radiates with heat, but you can tell in the air around you that things are different, waking up almost from the stupor that becomes unavoidable after months of the heavy sun weighing everything down.

now this. the cleanness of this weather is something i could breathe in forever. this song in my head all day long; melancholy, yes, but beautiful too, although aren’t most things?

this is the part of the year when i notice how things change; i doubt it has much to do with leaf metaphors, since we don’t really have trees here, at least not ones that change color. i just remember things better. my head is clearer; i start to miss things. my ears start itching to hear my dad read lord of the rings out loud, my sister and i wrapped in quilts on the couch of his office, windows wide open. this is where we should be listening to nickel creek, when i want to open my mom’s cedar chest and pull out my old clothes, from when autumns were as ideal as i wish they were now. i dig up old pictures, videos of my sister & me, four and two years old, in piles of leaves at my grandmother’s farm, my grandfather raking them into a pile.

i don’t know where all of those people have gone, what changed in between there and here. sometimes i try to figure it all out, & things are bad and days feel too stretched and lugubrious, & there are long periods of not-understanding that only depress and make things into a different shade of grey that does not illuminate. the hard thing is in learning to try & eliminate those days, to read the books yourself and make mental piles of the good things to try and remember every morning. does it always work, no. will a name change, a mug of tea, new people, gentler weather ultimately change it all? i don’t think it will, but they’re the links in between the things that will, & for now that’s enough.

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1 Comment

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One response to ““if you often smile, but often don’t smile”

  1. thanks for that song, Fé. I hadn’t heard it and it is beautiful.

    “but they’re the links in between the things that will, & for now that’s enough.” yesss.

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