Of sunset in the California Delta

Yesterday, bound for home, I spied a glow on the horizon.  I pulled my car onto private property, a sloping drive rising across Jackson Slough and bordering an orchard.  I have been ousted from just that spot in years past, but no one came this night.  Without my little Canon at hand, my cell phone had to suffice.  I snapped photo after photo with no certainty of what I would later see.

At home, over a small dinner, I scrolled through the gallery.  I uploaded any promising shots to Google photo and thence to my computer.  I had no plan to alter the images other than occasionally changing the tilt.  I watched again as the sun slipped down behind the distant turbines, brought closer to my eyes with the help of the zoom lens.  Over and over the day ended.  I felt the tension ease from my shoulders.  The slight tingle along my left shoulder which signals an impending shingles outbreak subsided.  The setting sun invited me to rest with her.

Night gathered around my tiny house as I enjoyed my private viewing of the evening’s splendor.  The morning might bring more strife.  In fact, I could well sleep so badly that even coffee wouldn’t shake the lingering grime of anguish from my heavy eyes.  Frustrations might lurk in the thickness of the early fog.  But in that moment, I could lose myself in the blaze of the sun as it hovered on the earth’s distant rim.  I could trace the stark lines of the windmills against the sweep of amber spanning the cloudless  sky.   Who could grow weary of such beauty?

Eventually I lowered the lid of my laptop.  I readied myself for sleep.  As I climbed the stair to my little loft bedroom, I strained to hear the night sounds of the Delta.  A pigeon softly cooed as it settled.  Coyotes yipped with  frantic indignation deep in the brush surrounding our meadow.  The big owl in my neighbor’s tree gave a throaty hoot as it spread its broad wings and moved through the towering oaks. 

Night wrapped itself like a shroud around my house.  As the moon rose, I fell into a dreamless sleep.  I did not wake until after daybreak.  By the time my eyes opened, the sun had returned in her gentler form, easing her pale rays through the parted curtains, sweetly whispering, it’s time to rise.

It’s the eighth day of the one-hundred and tenth month of my year without complaining.  Life continues.

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