mountain trees

25 December 2015 – Nice and slow morning. Each of the three of us agreed not to buy presents and of course we all did. Six white envelops on the coffee table. Two apiece each. Gift certificates. All to the same place and in the same denomination.

Talk about synchronicity.

Good long chat with dad. He’s looking to come out in the new year. Yay! And it sounds like things are charging full steam ahead with his girlfriend. Spending the day with her and her son and his girlfriend and her young daughter and the daughter’s father, who’s like a brother to dad’s girlfriend’s son. Whew, what a weirdly convoluted mouthful.

He still won’t tell me who she is or how I’m supposed to maybe know her.

Early afternoon snowshoeing. On top of a mountain. The air cool crisp clear. Snow falling whispily. The wonder of its pure whiteness. Snowballs and an impromptu snowman. The glorious peace of having no one else around—until the 4x4s started to arrive. En beastly masse. Signalling our departure.

Back home to a fire (in the fireplace we never use) and blankets over shoulders and spiked hot chocolate and a preponderance of jigsaw puzzles and the aromatic anticipation of a big bird coming out of the oven.

Such a beautiful Christmas Day. Love it love it love it.

Funny, just thinking that it’s a long time since I heard from Clara. In fact, don’t think I’ve heard from her at all. Trying to decide if I should call.


29 December 2015 – Night to self. (G at late screening of Hateful 8. Lucky boy has the week off.) Lugged City on Fire downstairs. To read on couch. By the tree and the fire. In the feel-good glow of home.

Didn’t get around to it.

Went to put on some music. Glanced at G’s desk (as I always do when in vicinity). Saw there his ever-present pad of foolscap. Latest entries:

  • Then it was that there we were…snookered in the same maze.
  • Year in music: Kamasi Washington, Beach House, Half Moon Run, Archive, Courtney Barnett, Express Rising, Mal Blum, Salad Boys, Astronauts etc., Palehound, Matthew E. White, Dan Deacon, Bill Fay, Tobias Jesso Jr., Cage the Elephant, Cass McCombs, Promised Land South.
  • ‘Rightly heard all tales are one.’ C. McCarthy.
  • False starts. And salsa farts.
  • Lotus bertholettii – parrot’s beak. FABACEAE.
  • Living however many years without knowing China is the eponymous legacy of its first emperor.

And, boxed off in the middle of the page:

This is highly irregular. I have been called for. Summoned. By the queen herself. The Queen. Which can only mean one thing.

Got to wondering whatever is he up to? Another idea strung up to dry? Born without the likelihood of reaching maturity.

I should talk, I thought. And got to pondering where Delilah was at.

Delilah and Peter.

In the kitchen, house on Bridge Farm. Him leaning against counter, arms crossed. Her at sink, sipping glass of water, looking out the window.

Impossible not to notice the corn. The perfect wall of it. Enclosing the area behind the house like a gangly green fence. Making it look more a suburban back yard than the wide open farmland she remembers. Where is the barn? The tractor? The fruit trees? The chickens and pigs and cows and goats? The hoop houses? The vegetable garden? The towers of tyres? The mess of palates and crates? The old flatbed truck? The vanquished farm equipment? The outhouse? The dogs and cats?

It’s like she’s never been here before.

In midst of comparing past to present a lanky teenage boy comes running out of the corn. Turning to call encouraging words to an old golden retriever limp-trotting behind.

Delilah’s eyes are glued to the boy.

‘Is that…?’

Peter cranes neck.

‘In the flesh.’

‘He’s so…tall.’

‘Up abouts six foot already. And still growing.’

Johnny. The reason Delilah was summoned.


30 December 2015 – Discussion at work on the nature of moments. Brought up by one of the younger girls. Who didn’t understand what her boyfriend meant last night when he said there is no past and no future. Only the present moment.

I asked if they are active partners.

She looked at me with a ‘duh’ face.

I asked what the context was.

She said they were just talking.

I asked about what.

She said she couldn’t remember.

I surrendered.

But another of the younger girls suggested that perhaps he meant the present is fluid and on-going. Not contained by boundaries. And added that, from a cosmic perspective, our lives are but a blink of the eye and that, because of this, there’s no need to fret about anything.

Save, it would seem, how one looks from behind on a bad hair day. Or which of the dozen selfies just taken to post on I-gram.

In any event, time did pass. I remember swimming. And walking home in the cold raining dark of twilight. Across the park.

And fairly certain that when I opened the back gate and came up beside the garage and saw the light on in there that I knocked on the door and heard Liz yell for me to entre allez vous.

She had a dozen or so of her paintings on easels. Was deciding which ones to include in a showing.

A moment that for me verified the existence of both the past and the future.


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