Voices on the Wind
Seasons of Life, of the Year, of the Day
by Larry Turner
I woke up this morning with nothing to look forward to. Blackness reached into my soul. Jan unceremoniously and to my total
surprise dumped me last night. The usual “It’s not you; it’s me,” which even my dim mind could translate as “It’s not you;
it’s another him.” Every unavoidable chore was a boulder of weighted nothingness. My old dog Janus awoke and rose slowly,
checking each joint to see if it still worked. The back door opened to an icy wall of wind. Snow no longer was falling down,
but still blew around, stinging me with darts of chill. Janus needed a path tramped down through the fresh snow; a year from
now he won’t be here. My shoulder bumped against the apple tree; from its branches snow cascaded into my parka and down my neck.
By noon I felt an eager anticipation, expecting a fresh surprise in every room I entered. Dinner and a movie with Jean tomorrow
evening. Three dates and we’ve reached the point where we find great enjoyment just telling each other about ourselves. I carried
Janus out into the yard and laughed at his puppy antics. The apple tree was in blossom. A light mist of rain was sustaining the
rich green of lawn and emerging leaves on trees. But through the mist the sun persevered, throwing a rainbow about Janus and me.
In late afternoon my mood had changed to lively enjoyment. June and I are going away this weekend. Four months we’ve been together
and we’re feeling closer all the time. My hands traced the shelves of my bookcase, pulling out volumes I had earlier bought and
began, then abandoned for a later novelty. Opening the door, I felt the hot sun caress my body. Janus sprang out, running with
that sustained energy only a young dog can muster. The apples were growing larger on the tree. The garden, too, was approaching
As evening arrived, I felt contentment at the abundance surrounding me, pictures on the wall, familiar furniture beckoning me.
Joan and I picked out the pictures, the furniture over the last thirty years. Her mother is doing better, and Joan will be home
tomorrow. I enjoy being with her; I enjoy her presence even when she’s not here. Janus walking calmly by my side, I strolled under
a million stars; the harvest moon still more than a week away. Careful not to trip over the huge pumpkins in the garden, I picked
an apple and crunched into its tart sweetness, the apple a pleasure to lip, tooth, nostril and ear as well as tongue.