It is April and we have run away.
My smoky bones are filled with fatigue, one that is older than last night's half-sleep. Heavy and somber, I breathe into the starched pillow, sink into the unfamiliar futon and listen. The rain is calling, whistling, sighing as it comes down. Ben, my Golden Retriever is staring at me. I roll over to avoid his gaze.
We have rented a tidy vacation cottage in the Var region to escape the Easter bullfights in Arles. The tension, the drunkeness, the ugliness that accompanies them is louder than the stomp of flamenco in the streets. My companion Remi, a professional photographer, is out working but I can't move. My nerves have let down, yes, all the way down. Time taunts me with its looseness.
Ben pricks up his ears and soon I hear the crunch of the car's arrival. I count the moments that it will take for Remi to arrive at the door, pulling myself up to the edge of the mattress in the interim. He bursts in, glistening with more than the rain. "You have to come see this!" he practically shouts with enthusiasm. "I have found the most amazing place, you won't believe it." He regales me with a tale of discovery while I systematically create and reject various excuses not to go back with him, to stay right there in my non-comfort zone. None of them work.
Soon we are heading down a dirt track to a mysterious red rock mountain towering over Roquebrune-sur-Argens. A blush of a blur pulses in my mind's eye. Remi pulls over, reverses and stops. He gets out and still I wait, still I am unwilling. Again, he tugs at me with his call. I know the sounds of his voice, that beautiful voice that pulled me across an ocean. He has seen something that is worth moving for.
I nearly slip over the moss as I make my way into the small valley that dips down before rising again. Clutching at my camera strap, I find my balance and look up. I am in a field of irises, their purple so profound, their petals bedecked with drops like the unreasonable tears that I have felt clinging to my heart. "Maybe they are diamonds instead," an inner voice whispers. Then I start to focus.
Just in the simple act of seeing, something shifts slightly. With the acknowledgement that beauty surrounds me, a door starts to crack open. The shape of the irises, their bended elegance, draws me in until I spy perched on one ever so lightly, a bright green cricket. His antenaes stop wiggling under my gaze but he does not flee. I slowly lower my face towards him. He is not alone. Nor am I. Inexplicably, I am filled with utter joy that expands to shake the clouds down. How giddy I become in remembering that hope repeats. What a fool to forget. My clock starts ticking at twelve. Anew, anon. The scales have been tipped and all with the weight of a cricket.
Today's post is for the "By Invitation Only" series. The current theme is "cycles." One of the definitions of that word caught my eye: "a permutation of a set of ordered elements in which each element takes the place of the next and the last becomes the first."
To read the posts of the other wonderful participants, please Visit Splenderosa.
And as always, thank you for being here...