“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan


Just this moment forever

Dogwood leaf - heart on fire

On the road Friday there was a storm coming in from the north, grey-black clouds facing me, Maggie on my lap. The sunlight was tipping left-over leaves of crepe myrtles & the tops of red maples & one gorgeous giant yellow tree, and they looked like birthday candles on a giant cake called the road - soon tiny baby raindrops began to patter the windshield, merry companions of the leaves falling from trees, and as the sky ahead of us grew darker, headlights began to be switched on, and all the while we were listening to Christmas carols sung by Diana Krall, and I was skipping the fast songs and only playing the slow ones, and truly, truly I felt we had accidentally meandered into a fairy tale. We stopped at an intersection full of cars and leaves & the leaves were swoosshhing along with the cars & the quickening wind, and Diana Krall was dreaming of a white Christmas, and Maggie was purring, face pressed to the window by my side, and I didn't want to go home. Couldn't we just stay in this moment, I thought, she and I? No more trips to the vet, no more worries or concerns about the future, no more heartaches. Just this moment forever - full of autumn winds & leaves & rain, a gathering storm in the distance, but oh so peaceful. It didn't seem fair that the light had to change.

And that night - the downhill to home, where the streetlights & moonshine lay giant shadows of trees at the bottom of that hill, shadows I see every night, and yet each evening they surprise me, waiting for me, moving in the wind. I am always disappointed when I remember they are only shadows, and I must return from that momentary dream of tree-ghosts back into the real world. Every night I find out there is no Santa Claus.


  1. How do you know there is no Santa Claus?? You live in such a magical world...there must be a Santa Claus!

    This post fills me with comfort. This is why I love the fall so much...the warmth and coziness of being inside, watching all the stirrings and whirlings of the outside. I wish I could have been in the car with you...time suspended at a red light.

    And that leaf...I see so many hearts in there!!

    Love this post

  2. How do you make even sadness seem so beautiful...? Magical melancholy? I know this feeling...

    Sending you a great big hug...

  3. Jaime - I thought of your trees of fire post when I saw this leaf - that & it was full of hearts! :)

    Celeste - Thank you. Not sure what's been going with me the last few days, but it will pass. just a little case of the blues.

    :) Debi

  4. Your writing gives me goose bumps! Beautifully poetic description of time standing still. There is still a tiny part of me that believes.

  5. Oh! You write the best descriptions. When you start writing poetry, please let me know. Your prose is so often a poem already.

  6. Suvarna - Me too. I really do still kind of believe. That's why it just breaks my heart when I have to face reality! :) Thank you for the compliments!

    Relyn- Thank you too! Maybe I'm a poet, not a painter. Boy, I think that would be so much easier for me!

    :) Debi


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