A bright, sunny late fall day. Not gray but golden. I over-dressed; tricked by a feels like temperature that was below freezing. One shirt too many. Ran north on the west river road, over the franklin bridge, south on the east river road, then over the lake street bridge. Breathing was more difficult today, mainly because I have entered a new phase of my cold: the stuffed-up, crudded-up phase. It bothers me, but not too much. I’m happy to be past the last phase, which made me anxious: the feeling of something sitting in my throat, always almost about to turn into cement in my chest. It never did, but throughout the day I imagined a future of not breathing, ventilators, the ICU. Ridiculous, of course. The fear of covid has really messed me up. I used to be an “easy” sick person — at least, I think I was? — but now, I’m a bit of a wimp about it all. Always looking to the future, worrying what my sickness could become.
10 Things I Noticed
- 4 stones stacked on the ancient boulder
- A view of the glowing white river through the bare trees near the floodplain forest
- Near Meeker Dam, on the St. Paul side: a mix of bare limbs, with yellow and green leaves
- So many views through the trees lining the bluffs: a smear of yellow or red, then open space with trails winding down to the river
- A little kid near the trail with an adult. The adult saying something about having a good run. The kid calling out at least 3 times, “Bye” “Bye” “Bye”
- An enthusiastic and friendly walker: “Good morning!” or was it just “Morning”? I’ve noticed that usually others say “morning” to me. I always respond, “Good morning.” Is it a regional difference? A east coast or southern thing to say both words, or is it just me?
- On the St. Paul side, somewhere up the hill just past Meeker Dam, someone has removed one of the black iron fence panels. The spot where it’s missing doesn’t lead anywhere. It’s been this way for a few weeks. Who did it and why? Will it be replaced sometime soon?
- Starting my run, heading north, the air was calm, everything quiet, until a car came by blasting music quickly distorted by the doppler effect. Instead of bothering me, this disruption enabled me to notice and appreciate how quiet it was when the car was no longer there
- The faintest trace of my shadow in front of me as I ran north at the beginning of my run
- Honking geese — only 2 or 3 honks + 1 chickadee calling out, “chick-a-dee-dee-dee”
Here’s the last bit of a poem that I posted on this log in November of 2019:
from November/ Lucy Larcom
This is the month of sunrise skies
Intense with molten mist and flame;
Out of the purple deeps arrive
Colors no painter yet could name:
Gold-lilies and the cardinal-flower
Were pale against this gorgeous hour.
Still lovelier when athwart the east
The level beam of sunset falls:
The tints of wild-flowers long deceased
Glow then upon the horizon walls;
Shades of the rose and violet
Close to their dear world lingering yet.
What idleness, to moan and fret
For any season fair, gone by!
Life’s secret is not guessed at yet;
Veil under veil its wonders lie.
Through grief and loss made glorious
The soul of past joy lives in us.
More welcome than voluptous gales
This keen, crisp air, as conscience clear:
November breathes no flattering tales;—
The plain truth-teller of the year,
Who wins her heart, and he alone,
Knows she has sweetness all her own.
Love the idea of “veil under veil its wonders lie” with the description of November as “the plain truth-teller of the year”