Saturday, December 19, 2015

Fallen peonies

Almost winter, and Elisabeth has cut the peonies and laid them to rest.

It is not yet 5 pm and already the light is falling, failing. Faint pinks score the clouds and then dissipate. The balustrade glows white against the looming dark. A skim of ice stills the surface of the pond all day, a brittle solid checking waves, while uphill, sheets flap right off the line in the wind.  The top has sheared right off the old lichen covered spruce that guards the edge of the drive, and white leaves lie scattered about the raspberry canes and all up and down the road. A stripping wind last night laid them all low. 

Late morning, ducks cackle at the back of the pond.  Marsh grasses are brown and flattened, the colour of the dog's back.  We walk out the road and into the wind, the coolness against our teeth bracing, the sea grey and rumpled under a ridged grey sky. Cotton topped grasses flair against the fruiting mosses, ditches and lowlands are damp with icy streams. Coyote scat litters the road; Enya races up lanes and down deer paths, but then hurries back again, nervy with scent and danger.

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