Suggest woodpecker. I’ll sleep on it and tomorrow I’ll see a red-headed woodpecker under the ponderosa. So this is the way the world links, I’ll tell myself, even after I see the woodpecker is a sprinkler connected to my neighbor’s garden hose.
The sound of N. Not the way N looks written on a page, but the way N feels forming in your mouth. Tongue to hard palette. Sustained.
A fire blanket. That, and he offers his back-up camping chair. Hot coffee in a Stanley thermos. You wonder how he does what he does. What sees him through. But he says it’s simple: You care for people until they learn to care themselves.
“But don’t you mean until they learn to care for themselves?” You don’t want to ask, and so what do you do? You blurt it out. Finesse. Hooves over an open mouth. Wild burro in china shop. But no. He takes your question kindly. He has learned the difference and trusts that you will, too.
What I might have said would have been about the trains and what passengers think at the station: They will come, these trains, and this will soon be over.
But what followed was all rain, he wrote before I did, much of it raw.
Rain, raw. I’ve never felt this. And where I live there are no stations. I rethink my thoughts.
Photo by William O’Keefe.