Wandering out through a side door he loitered nonchalantly in the deep blue shadows cast by the small clump of trees abutting the house. He leaned against the boards of the house and gazed thoughtfully at the grass, weeds and stones of the path that ran from the doorway.
The air was warm with a gentle breeze blowing in across the lake, a mere dozen yards in front of the house. He glimpsed the surface of the water through some bushes and small saplings — alder, willow and ash.
From an open window came a gorgeous music absolutely foreign to his ear. Never had he heard such a thing. Lilting, melodic and rhythmic with singing. A male voice. The chords were new to him, they were seemingly in a major key, but somehow they had a melancholy edge, and occasionally took an unexpected turn, and the feeling dipped into something deeper, darker, like a little shadow under a lighter shadow in the curve of a landscape of hills and tangled trees, or a mood when first ever experienced by a toddler. This toddler may be toddling in a back yard. Perhaps a smell of fresh cut grass is combining with oil, some chimney smoke from coal burning, frying pancakes from the open kitchen door and on top of this a sound of leaves rustling, a distant clanking, a dog barking and on top of all this the thoughts in his newly forming brain are creating little emotions and relationships of awareness of self and others.
The sound of the music is so new to L’s ear that it is Like one of those first experiences. And he is transfixed, and allows the music to play itself out, following it with his ears and with something else inside him.
It is the year 2000 and he is standing by Lake Michigan listening to a recording of a local group called The Sea And Cake.
L recalled all the bits of his life in a gestalt.
The stoats and weasels
Flying machine number 224
The Crusaders lodging in his outhouses
The trips up to Ulster
The times in London with B
B’s stories of her home, the castle grounds, her horses and her mates the blacksmith, the Captain, her yeomen pals and all the gardeners and her sisters
The other machines he’d designed such as the machine suit that was covered in thousands of tiny cogs allowing for smooth travel across any surface
His invention for travelling by two separate sets of wheels using an up and down motion - that is bending in the middle like a stoat and locomotion ensuing with acceleration up to quite high speeds on flat surfaces
His sketches of veins and arteries
The red mushrooms with the white spots
Trips to strange islands covered with fields of lavender
Drinking in the local pubs with B, the blacksmith and the English archers
And last but not least — the little shadows, those pockets of unknown quantity — all the uncertainty and the knowledge of a desire not to hold on...
Ta very much,