You can barely see it there in the center of that bluesky heart framed in puffy clouds, but it's there. It is there. It swooped and rose and swooped and rose again.
It took my heart with it.
I crossed Lloyd Creek, still as it could be, the water brown from tannins, and thought about the claim of a local guy that he's seen a huge gator there, under the bridge. I did not see it.
The logging trucks did indeed pass me, speeding along so fast that the wind wake felt as if it would take me with it and I had to hold my ball cap on my head but it wasn't scary. It was just fine and a little exciting, the roar as they passed.
I got to the dirt road where I wanted to walk and it was as peaceful and as quiet as I remembered. The ferns still line the road and I remember when I first lived here and would dig up one or two on every one of my walks and bring them home and plant them in my camellia bed and they still grow there. There are no houses on this road and it leads to a gate which I've never crossed, and a field where there used to be cows and there was corn but now is not planted in anything. The loudest sound I heard was the swishing talk of tall pine trees as a small wind began to blow in. They leaned in towards each other and then danced away and back again and I think they were speaking of the rain they could taste and see from their own vantage point as it soon began to sprinkle a little and then truly rain, but not a pouring rain. Just a sweet gentle one and I walked home in it and it was cool and beautiful. I could see the needles of it falling a bit slanted from the sky, the grass, the pastures, the trees, the tea-colored creek all receiving it gracefully.
I came home and took my clothes off the line and changed my wet walking clothes for dry things and here I am, my skin as cool to the touch as a stone taken from a river bed.
And now the sun is out again and my hens are discussing everything as they rustle through the leaves. What a sweetness to have heard the language of the wild birds, of the pines, of the hens, of the tires on the pavement already today. Of the gray, falling rain when it was all around me.