I have a yearning for chocolate as the weather has turned grey again this late afternoon.
And so, just near six o’clock and murky twilight now, I wrap my coat around me, pull my boots on with heavy socks and pull my cap low down over my face to head to the village in the billowing wind. Darkness descends along with the first rain as I walk.
The streets are empty and still shining in the dim light. My thoughts wander and I’m hardly aware of thinking. The motion of getting there methodical and the path well known enough now to not have to think much at all.
I do think that I may never leave this place as I walk. The lines that keep repeating from a song during these years, “Can learn to sing euphorically. Given time it is real.” Can you “fake it ’til you make it”, I wonder absent mindedly. I suppose a person can become used to just about anything after a time. I think of “Papillion” and the two different choices taken to find peace. I still do not know which one is better than the other…
I could find peace here.
There are moments of it now. When the anger of these last years abates and I wonder if fighting for truth is worth the exchange. Again. Where nothing much seems to be important enough to get all hit up about. When I’ve “let go” to the point of not really reacting to anything around me at all. I just look at the light and the colour of the sky some days and that is more than enough now.
By the time I arrive at the village it’s almost totally dark and eerily quiet.
As I turn a corner to my regular store I suddenly realise I’ve missed opening hour.
I change direction only slightly and continue to walk through a dark corridor full of postboxes next to the closed shop entrance, unsure if the door on the other side is still open. But I don’t stop to ponder. I keep on walking through, until the murky doorway clears at the last minute and I can see there is no closed glass to force me to turn back again.
Out the other side.
Over the half dirt road and around the pointlessly low fencing.
I see the shape of a man standing in the dimly lit area outside the small cafe but, because I’m not wearing my glasses, can’t make his face out well enough to warrant a greeting. I suppose he may think me rude but I no longer really care about such things anymore. I can see by the rigid way he’s standing that the weather is making him uncomfortable though.
I greet the one shop attendant, at the entrance, as I enter and make my way to grab a bar of chocolate. I greet the shop attendant at the till briefly and am on my way with little conversation or niceties today. They too seem eager to have the day done with and be on their way home to warmer places.
It’s now completely dark.
The rain has begun to fall in earnest as I begin the walk back home. The wind has picked up even more and I have to hold the peak of my hat, to stop it from flying off, as I walk forward, full on into the storm and head down low.
As I casually wander back along the completely barren streets, now splashing wet, I’m suddenly aware of how unfazed I am in full. The wind is pumping around and against me and I can feel my clothes becoming soaked as the rain begins to pelt down even harder.
I didn’t put on a raincoat despite the impending weather.
I thought I’d make it home before it set in.
The fact that I’m now caught in it, full throttle, alone and in the dark no longer bothers me at all. This is what it is and I’ll make it home regardless. No big deal anymore. The discomfort I should probably be feeling is non-existent and I continue to walk through it only observing, with some interest, how little these things affect me. These days.
In fact, as I turn the final corner to the flatlet I’m renting the only thought that crosses my mind is…
I feel totally fucking alive right now.
I make my way up the steps and open the swollen, half stuck wood front door with a yank and enter my room.
I take my wet jacket off and hang it on the back of a chair, switching on the wall heater and dragging the chair in front of it with one hand so that it’ll be dry for tomorrow. This is the only jacket I own these days. Gifted to me by my once was lover and best friend. Now so many years ago.
I pull my pants off, clinging damply to my legs, and drape them over the seat of the chair as well. I hang the cap up on the hook at the door and shake my half wet hair loosely back over my shoulders, throwing my head back as I do it. This reminds me of being up at my special place in the mountains suddenly.
That place where I felt so much more of me.
I’m suddenly turned on and my thoughts drift to lovers and firelight. The warmth and dew of naked limbs intertwined and the timelessness of being lost in someone else. With someone else.
I walk to the window and pull back the curtains, to look out into the wild night instead, and see the flickering of flames across the street. I stand and stare for a minute or two, jealously imagining, as the colours of fire seep up and sweep down the barely visible wall.
I like it like this.
This unfettered, uncontrollable, uninhibited overflow of nature is me.
The me that is most alive and free.
Wild nights – Wild nights
Wild nights – Wild nights!
Were I with thee
Wild nights should be
Futile – the winds –
To a Heart in port –
Done with the Compass –
Done with the Chart!
Rowing in Eden –
Ah – the Sea!
Might I but moor – tonight –
– Emily Dickenson