The Dark Months Six

Wintry gloom makes the light all the brighter when it comes. This is the sixth in the series, which you can read here. And it comes as we awake early to bright, frosty, clear days.

The Dark Months – Six

6 a.m.

TV screen flickers, Cold blue light. A pumpkin with a straw wig, or a man? Little hands gesticulate. The pouting petulance is too much too bear.

The screen is switched off.

There are enough monsters in the world. Don’t dwell on them. Don’t invite them in.

7 a.m. The sun’s gilded ascent casts an ever warmer glow which cuts through the fragile frost. An omen?

9 a.m. Through gates, and along a winding path. Ahead lies a large square. Facing this, a pavilion. It’s a reminder of more innocent times, looking out across a city which has changed beyond recognition.

© Sanjit Chudha 2020

Racing in, unbidden, is the thought that the city faces its own redundancy; large vertical properties lie empty, reflecting sunlight from their silvery tops while sucking in the dark below. It feels cold thinking about it.

Then, rounding a corner are two cats.

They look at me, startled but steady and secure in their patch of sun.

I look at them.

They look at each other.

Then one looks at me, the other looks at him.

Caught in the act. Of what?

© Sanjit Chudha 2020

There’s something touching about the way these creatures, basking, and caught unawares, are suddenly self-conscious.

Had they summoned the sun? Did I interrupt their incantation? Will their magic succeed again tomorrow?

I don’t need the answers, I just hope so.