A bittersweet haze
Dick MacKenzie - www.dickshideaway.com
This September sky has haze hovering on the horizon. The sun, surrounded by the same haze, blazes shining diamonds on water waves all across the lake. It's a beautiful fall day that draws a faint sadness from somewhere around my heart, a loneliness I suffer for a short time every year as summer vanishes and fall marches briskly toward the cold months.
For decades, maybe more than a half century, I've puzzled at the little sadness. It's neither disturbing nor particularly disruptive, but it comes every September and leaves a little reminder, like a small puppy left alone for too long in a big room.
The feeling is one that I remember from a moment when I was five years old. My circle of friends must have been a year and two years older than I was. They were the lucky ones who got to go to school at the end of summer. My biggest wish was to go to school, too, but despite being the only one who could count to 100 and also read poetry by Robert Louis Stevenson, both of which I did to the great delight and bright eyed awe of my friends, I wasn't old enough to enter first grade.
I had, then, a secret spot on a high hill overlooking the school yard where I went alone on many school days to daydream and watch my friends frolicking at recess. It seems that the utter aloneness of those moments revisits me each fall and forms a sweet gray cloud, like a sugar donut for a diabetic, inside my head.
And then one day I wake up and the cloud has frittered itself away and it feels good to pull on a sweater and go for a walk.