Today it rains. Before the big picture window I sit, warm and dry, a pot of water hissing on the wood stove, the old dog cleaning his wet paws beside me. Awaiting the return of my boys out on a ride, caught in the surprise shower. But no real surprise. You know how the mountains are. My boys do too. They will be fine. Just wet, and happy for the warmth of the fire.
I listen to rhythm of the rain on the metal roof and wonder when we will hear the still and silence that tells us it has turned to snow. It will be soon. If not this storm, perhaps the next. Bringing with it the gentle blanket that tucks the mountain to sleep and allows her to drift off into the dormant season. For half the year she sleeps a deep slumber, beneath the frozen ground and layer upon layer of powdered white.
Behind the rain streaked glass I see the mountainside with her first glimmers of gold in the trees and browns across the open meadows. A softening of the land. Letting go of summer. I allow the inevitable to come. What more can I do? Change.
Change within and without. As the seasons do, so will we. The seasons stir through the mountain before us like waves in the open sea, in constant movement, a cadence and synchronization as old as time and regardless of our whims.
And soon, oh so soon, she will explode with a dazzling display of green and gold, more spectacular every day. I say I prefer when the sky is swathed in clouds; with the clear blue there is too much color, almost a gaudy display, too much for my eyes that for half the year are at ease with white and muted shades of green and grey. And yet I can not keep my eyes diverted from the brilliance. I don’t even try.
The flash of color like lightening in a July storm, the color illuminates the mountain, as brief as a day, or a week, a moment in time. And as quickly as it came, it fades and crumbles, turns to brown and blows away in the wind.
We grasp onto what was, running to catch a single leaf in the wind. It is gone. Now one of many carried away in a dance of abandonment. Swept away anonymously in the crowd. Leaving the fine and lacy branches of the Aspen naked to the oncoming winter winds.
But for now, I sit and await the inevitable. In the simplicity of my home, at this moment so small under the leaden autumn sky, grateful for little more than being warm and dry, I stare out the window before me. I wait for change.