The days get shorter. The nights grow colder. Thoughts drift northward, to the windswept bleaks where lonely hearts find no comfort in sunshine.
The daily news hawks tales of despair on the dirty streets. But what can you do? A man in the shadows squeezes his hands tightly in a pair of tattered socks.
On Rodeo and 5th, fur muffs recall an en vogue era and fill the sidewalks with the scent of antiseptic. Long nails, painted red and green, of course, grip tiny leashes of tiny dogs that shiver on the cold concrete.
And in lands far away, innocents starve under the desert stars and on palm-lined beaches. The days get shorter, colder, for them too.
A crackling fire may cheer the night, but all fires burn to ashes in time.
The holidays are here again, jingle jangle, gimme more. The neighbors’ lights are up, an electric temple to excess and plastic. The big box sales are on, WHILE SUPPLIES LAST! The Ford F-150 is again America’s best selling auto, 31 years running.
I climb, up, up, onto the gentle slope, where the ocean is visible and the only sounds are the echoing chirps of crickets and birds rising to greet the dusk. My lover and I hold our breath. We hold hands.
We sit together and watch the fiery sun, not yet fallen to ash, dip into the big blue drink. We count the stars until the chill in the air fills our eyes with painless tears. Our silent return down the packed earth trail is made in darkness. Our smiles don’t need light to be felt.