Of books, and words, and sunset

From an early age, I roamed around with my nose stuck in a book.  Doctors had told my parents that I would never walk, so my father did me one of his few favors and taught me to read at the age of three.  A shy kid who came out of an early illness with a gimpy gait, I clutched a pencil and scribbled in spiral-bound notebooks.  By late elementary school, I incurred the wrath of the nuns by writing book reports on obscure Henry James novels and the science fiction favored by my older brothers.

I wake every morning with words tumbling from my brain.  Later, as evening falls, I open a book and settle into a rocking chair.  Perhaps I better relate to the ghosts in my old stories and the lively folk in British mysteries than I do to my neighbors and kin.

After a day of grousing in the back office of the firm where I strive to add value, I drove home tonight under a pink-tinged sky.  I pulled onto Jackson Slough Road as a burst of crimson shot across the western horizon.  I sat in my car and stared.  I remembered a book which I read in eighth grade, about a boy whose father died in war.  He and his mother crafted a new existence for themselves in the New Mexico community which previously had been their vacation retreat.   He rose above his grief.  He found his way.  

I studied the sleek curve of Mt. Diablo in the distance, watching over the California Delta with a quiet and serene strength.  My eyes traced the bold streaks spreading across the sky.  I rolled down the window and listened to the sounds of night on the San Joaquin.  Then I took myself home.

It’s the eleventh day of the ninety-seventh month of My Year Without Complaining.  Life continues.

Red sky at night, Sailor’s delight.  Red Sky at morning, Sailors take warning.

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