Days of rest.

This morning, as I sat musing on a story I've been wanting to tell, it decided to become a poem, and it asked to be written down. For the first time since arriving here, and for only the second time since February, I opened my poetry notebook and watched my script shaping itself right off the tip of my pen's nib. Halfway through, I switched to the computer, rattled in what I'd already written, kept on until an endpoint had bloomed before me. It is work of which I am proud, because it is work that was unforced. My lines have lengthened again as my mind has calmed here; when I finished, it felt just like the snapshot I had captured and wanted to develop.

And so I slipped into the afternoon with something happily finished behind me, and the day has felt like a gift: time and space laid out before me, room to move around in my ideas, even some moments to finish small chores like washing my tea towels and polishing my clogs and boots. I continue reading a work that bored me to tears eight (can it be eight?) years ago, and while I still don't love it passionately, I am learning things from it now. Soon, I will be fed my hot dinner in hall--and though "individual nut roast" sounds dubious to me, the recipe I turn up through Google sounds tasty indeed. And then there will be time for more reading, possibly even just for fun.

Perhaps paradoxically, the weather has helped me cocoon a little bit today: our high temperatures today are ten degrees lower than yesterday, and for the first time since my arrival, it's not sunny. The trees are starting to tip with color. We're having fall weather, in other words, and it's not a bit unwelcome.

(By the way, make sure you enlarge today's top picture by clicking on it; otherwise, you'll miss the fun.)