March 4, 2012


By late afternoon, it was already cooler. By the time I went to bed it was cold enough to close the sliding doors. But an hour after falling asleep I awoke, wanting to hear the wind. I slid one side open and threw another blanket on the bed. The trees outside were lighted by the moon. I thought of Walter and Joseph’s “summer pavilion” in a side yard at the farm, a birthday present from Joseph, a small screen house he made, dimly transparent and open to the four breezes. It had a vintage screen door, thoughtfully salvaged from somewhere, decorated with red wood trim. The inside was appointed by Walter: a pair of futon cots, a Chinese carpet, a couple of adirondack chairs, and a few items from the collection, a mid-century mahogany tray table, an oil lamp, a terra cotta pre-columbian deity, a few books. The overall look, as usual, was that the little pavilion had worn its location under the elms forever.

I listened to the wind and watched, through the screen of the lanai, the trees shifting in the moonlight. I drifted off in an erotic reverie, which arose unsummoned but welcome, variations of love present and past unfolding in random tender vignettes until I fell asleep.