I awoke from a deep sleep, my bladder bursting, hustling me out of my warm and comfortable bed. It was three hours ’til dawn but deep down I knew my sleep was over for the night.
I tried to write but my block stopped me cold, a book to read maybe? Some real writer to motivate me. The words on James Lee Burke’s pages didn’t seem to catch my interest. I knew it wasn’t Burke…it was me.
With Dish’s Top 250 how can you find nothing to pique your interest on TV? It wasn’t Dish…or Netflix and Amazon Prime…it was me…and the infomercials about “CrepErase.” Anyone remember “Psychic Friends?”
I was up and antsy staring at the darkness from my French doors. There was still two hours before the break of dawn. My bride was still asleep, her puppies protecting her, blocking anyone’s path to the bed. I sure did not want to wake her, stumbling into something in the dark.
I decided to do what I had done during the years I was a contributing member of society…the days before I retired. When I taught, I ran or walked in the darkness before school, from five until six-thirty every morning. I don’t run any longer thanks to arthritic knees, but I do walk, and it seemed “there is no time like the present.”
The light from my headlamp reflected back into my eyes as the mist swirled, the road as dead and silent as the inside of a coffin. I shuttered a bit as goosebumps chased each other over my body. The mist was closing in on me and quite eery. As my pathway rose to the ridge and highway above, the mist seemed to clear allowing me to observe a light show I had somehow forgotten.
Droplets of dew hung from the greenery lining the sides of the road and showed all the colors of the rainbow as I walked past illuminating them. Each little droplet acted as its own prism. Tiny stars twinkling red, green, yellow and a pale blue. It was as if Christmas had come early along with a birthday celebration.
An orb spider had strung her web across my path and it appeared festooned with diamonds. The large arachnid sat in the middle of her glittering domain, choosing to sit on her tiara rather than wear it. I ducked to keep from disturbing the web and Miss Spider.
A leopard frog froze in the beam of my light reminding me of a previous predawn walk at the lake at Lookup. Dozens of frogs lined up on the lake path, facing the lake in hopes breakfast would fly by. Their yellow-orange eyes glowing in the beam of my spotlight along with their black, green and yellow patterns.
There were other glints of light, some that moved. I looked closely at a limb and the greenish mote of light reflecting from it…an insect of some type, tiny with pale white legs and a greenish exoskeleton. I had moved too close to see the twinkle and backed away to make sure it was real and still there.
I reminded myself of a walk on a moonless, predawn hike during my former life. As the light on my head bounced from side to side I saw an unfamiliar, heart-shaped flower reflecting in the distance. Reflecting white in the grass, the “flower” was heart-shaped and looked as if there were two stamens instead of one. As I moved closer to examine it, the flower moved and the stamens blazed orange-red back at me. It was the tiny face of a very young possum. It looked at me with no fear or maybe it was simply blinded by the light. I briefly worried about its mother until I heard a rustling in the dry leaves beyond the grass. Mom was still close by, her own eyes blazing in my lamp, and I decided I would make sure I wasn’t close by.
There was a type of harmony to the lights. So different, yet fitting together like a symphony…a symphony of light rather than sound. Calliope was the Greek muse presiding over poetry and eloquence, known for her harmonious voice. I am neither poetic or eloquent and my singing voice is certainly not harmonious. I hope Calliope doesn’t mind me thinking of her as I think of my own calliope of light.
I will pay for my early morning later in the day, but the price of admission was worth it. I believe I might do it again tomorrow…maybe I’ll just change my schedule to accommodate more of them.
Don Miller writes on a variety of subjects. To visit his author’s page go to https://www.amazon.com/Don-Miller/e/B018IT38GM
The image is from http://alistairduncan.co.uk/portfolio/possibility