The Wee Hours
Awake in the wee hours, the “middle” of the night.
The world feels quiet, sleeping, and close. The world seems smaller and more intimate. Or perhaps that’s just my world. Unencumbered by visitors and conversation, undisturbed by the constant chatter of the television.
Sassy June awakes, walks to the kitchen door with one eye open, as if to say “Time to get up?”.
Sleepless, I stare out the west window through the maple trees twice my age or more, and watch the stars. One disappeared, and I thought cloud cover must be blowing in. A few moments later, the star reappeared, and I realized I stared at it so long the planet moved beneath us. As our blue globe rotated, stars would vanish momentarily behind a branch, to pop up on the other side after a minute or two.
Standing beside the wood stove, I look out the south window. Across the road and down a hundred yards, small lights glow at Hillmeyer’s farmhouse. I can’t tell if they are porch lights or within the house. Light from my own kitchen window spills out onto the snow-covered ground beneath, illuminating an odd rectangle, stretched out of shape. A trapezoidal micro world that extends no more than five feet from me. I watch as the wind blows tiny things through the spotlight. Bits of autumn leaves, little crystals of snow, an occasional leaf of grass, dried and tan.
I consider the things I might do as long as I’m awake. Get out the easel and sort paints, maybe start a new canvas. Re-string fishing rods and ice-fishing tip-ups. Write a little.
I could post to the blog or read a few others, but the thought of the laptop and its noise, the light and the connectivity to the outside world seems offensive, intrusive.
I want to do nothing to fracture the fragile silence of this hour. Like sitting in church or attending a funeral, restful quiet is in order.
Before I know it, I am waking to the dawn in the chair beside the window.