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Pittsburgh Parades

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Thunder sends chills

black-purple clouds, afternoon quiet

hangs on threads.

 

Rain songs lead the march,

lightning paints oaks

with ragged brushes.

 

Stoic maples join in, and play

on wind, their sleek limbs

show power and purpose.

 

Summer days when storms

come, I glide to a porch seat

on the darkened street.

 

Swept into the movement,

carried by beauty

of thunderstorm parades.

Sunset to the East

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Our refreshing early morning walk brought us to the grassy knoll where we often sit to enjoy our  little piece of the world.

“Which way will you face today?” inquired Sofia.

“Hmmm, I think today, I will enjoy the sunset to the east.”

“Excellent,” she proclaimed. “We’ll sit back to back and watch the world spin.”

We settled in and Sofia opened our thermos of tea and poured us each a cup. She handed me mine with a toast “To another beautiful day.” Tessa Sue circled us slowly. I knew she was exploring with her nose, wagging while wandering, and sometimes nose-bumping our legs to remind us that petting her is a good thing.

Our conversation ranged from the philosophical to the political to the mundane, but we kept coming back to superlatives to describe the view.

“The poppies are closing now,” she said. “They feel dusk upon them.”

“The streams of sailing white clouds lying low over the mountains are just beginning to turn pink in my direction,” I exclaimed. “It’s going to be a beauty. I’m glad I turned to the east today for our setting sun.”

“I know,” she responded, “It’s going to be a glorious sunset to the west as well. The sun is withdrawing across the valley, but it’s playing with the river, showing off  sparkling diamonds in the ripples. Shadows from the fir and cedar are really coming alive, stretching out to their full length across the meadow and the sun is providing perfect back-lighting; the trees are basking in it.”

“I always love the long shadows,” I said. “I have the Aspen casting more of a group shadow this way, shorter, but intertwined and dancing with each other in the breeze. And the clouds are  alive now. Incredible streaks of red hovering over the peaks as the valley descends into darkness. It is quite the sunset! I’m glad we came out for this.”

“Yes,” she said quietly. “I love our sunsets together.”

We were then silent as the earth rolled and our sunset became dusk as the sun slipped away. The air began to chill. Soon Sofia closed the thermos and gathered my cup. “I guess it’s time for home,” she said.

“Yes, another beautiful evening,” I replied. We stood and started down the short  trail to the house. Sofia hooked my arm with hers, and a gentle breeze accompanied us as we slowly made our way. I knew Tessa Sue was trotting along right behind, with brief nose-to-the-ground interludes.

The trail was known to me after so many years, and it was smooth and well maintained. Sofia had been walking with me this way  for several years now, and despite our age, we could still coordinate together like a dance team as she steered the course. Nevertheless, I always had my white cane with me. I used it to keep track of the edge of the path, which also helped me paint a mental picture  of our walk. So I took it with me, even when walking with Sofia.

We were silent as we enjoyed the song of trees. I remembered that day years ago when I did see the sunset in the Rockies, and it was spectacular. I wondered what direction I would face the next evening we came up to the grassy knoll, and which beautiful sunset would fill my mind.

 

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