Sunday, October 4, 2015


For Simone

A friend once tells you that you are the official Keeper of Seasons in this city. Maybe that is where you got your habit of looking for signs. The smallest signs of change. Of transformation. In trees. In the wind. In people. Like the solitary man in one of Henning Mankell's novels whose job was to measure ocean depths. He could only notice the distances between him and others, because that is what he was tuned to measure.

Today morning you walk around the circle of Tabebuia Impetignosas in the park, your annual check. The leaves have started to yellow and brown. They must fall, for the riot of pink to blossom in November. You notice that all the trees are not yellowing at the same pace. But you know that, the order in which they bloom. The first one that always bursts into a pink cloud has more brown leaves than the others.

You are thrilled to see that they have planted new tabebuias all along the edges, pink and yellow. So there will be new ones to reconstruct the circle of colour, whenever the old ones die. You are immensely grateful to the vision of the park caretakers.

The park is covered in dew. Crystals of light. The mornings are becoming cooler.

All is well. So far. So much environmental damage, so many aberrations, there is no guarantee that anything will go according to the annual cycle. The trees are often confused. Like the rain trees forgot to lose their leaves in January this year because the cold lasted longer than usual.

So every single thing you receive is precious. Your expectations are set very low. Every joy a jewel saved from the wreckage of the world. The uncertainty of our futures. And sometimes the rubble of our lives.


The dragonflies are going crazy in the sun. Sept-Oct-Nov. That is their season. They came in with the bright orange Rudrapalaash. And will leave after the tabebuias die, their short 3-week life. You wait for them all year. Some part of your soul must be in them.

You lie down on the grass and watch them fly around, glittering. White clouds move in from the west, it is windy. A brown dog is sleeping nearby, keeping silent company. Swallows and kites way up in the sky, doing their crazy somersaults and glides. Soon you are so still the dragonflies nearly touch your face flying so low. They are coming closer and closer. You are ecstatic. The trust of dragonflies. What more could you ask for?

This Morning

Oh, this life,
the now,
this morning,

which I
can turn
into forever

by simply
what is here,

is gone
by noon.

David Budbill