I feel the weight of winter

I sit alone on the boat.

It’s not yet midnight, but it will be soon. Rain lashes Swallow’s thin steel cabin, the fire glows bright, the kettle creaks. Cats stretch on the rug.

I feel the weight of winter. A day spent alone. I ventured outside only twice, hesitantly, fearing myself ill-equipped for the storm. My back aches from being inside.

“There is no such thing as bad weather, only inadequate clothing.” – Ted Hughes

That may be true. I wrapped myself in a fur-lined coat, a gift from my love. Big-booted I sloshed across the muddy grass, slipping, stumbling. Wheeled coal down to my boat. Shut the doors. Stoked the fire, kept her hot. Poured more tea. Rain streams down my windows. Some streams into the boat, and drips, resounding, in bowls and pans.

She is having a quiet day. I am having a quiet day.

An awkward morning kiss pierced the sad fog I wrapped around me. My armour is weak: I need protection. From where, if not from her?

I chose a card. A protector. The Hanged Man.

Resolutely calm in his limbo – today is not for movement, but reflection, internal watching, note-taking, ebbing and flowing.

Music? Yes. Plenty. It hasn’t stopped all day, and I can’t bear to turn it off for sleep. Later, I will drift, unmoored, to Tiny Vipers, Family Band, Bridget Hayden.

“Time takes your breath away.”


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