There are clouds massing over the mountain ranges and formations tumbling together in the blue skies high above the valley. Mauve and lilac and white.
I cut back my Greek origanum that I plan to dry in the oven, and cut it back hard so that the new rocket leaves will get more sun. The garden needs work and I don’t know where to start — overgrown salvias and mint springing up in unwanted places and leaves bunching thick under the olive trees. I worry about my rummaging puppies coming on scorpions in the mouldy debris. This is the times of the year for thirsty cobras and scorpions, and much as I love the snakes of the hot dry places, I care for my small puppies. A friend’s little dog died yesterday after being bitten by a brown widow spider hiding in dead leaves.
As I work in the garden I make up scenes for the novel and avoid the lovely greeny-blue rue that causes my skin to blister. I think about risk and danger and putting my hand into nettles in a faraway Welsh garden, the weals and burning pain.
For once in my life I am not sure what is going to happen next. Nothing stirs in me for the season turning to autumn, the astrological constellations do not resonate, my dreams are muffled and cryptic. I am atypically marooned in the present moment.
There may be rain this evening and the New Year’s Eve party with crowds of y much-loved friends and neighbours milling together in mutual bafflement on the lawn ( the renegade Catholic priest talking at odds with the bipolar sculptor, the herbwitch sidling away from the librarian, the solitary bachelor alarmed by all the small children, the cats hissing at the puppies, o social eclectic how I do love thee!) , may become a kitchen table affair as the rain pelts down outdoors and everyone grabs chairs and sofa ends.
This then is an hour of suspended intuitions, and I aim just to stay with the mild uncertainty and watch for signs of change.While rain clouds bloom like great purple irises overhead, foaming and pillowy. And the garden smells peppery and electric in the heat.
My body at home in the smouldering landscape, just breathing in the crackling ions and hints of storm. Unsure what comes next and prepared for anything. Sometimes it goes like this too –