It’s hard to stretch up on your toes to do work: tightening screws, screwing in hooks, or placing a nail. A bad back does not help. The pain is subtle and familiar. It seems to affect the world. Everything amplifies.
The street for the cull de sac is crowded. The cars are not shiny in the shroud of December. There is no snow, no cold, and no rain. There is the shroud. It fills the corner of the eye while working.
The helper wants to use a different hook; the type that would attract moisture here outside. “No,” and then an abbreviated explanation. “Brass please.”
“Yes thank you.” The world is better. The shroud is still there.
Juggernaut’s hand is lost. It could very well be the end of the world. This would be a shame.
I’ve grown attached to this sliver gray shroud. It has a subtle peculiar familiarity of a day after a fresh rain shower. It’s almost calming. It has given the neighborhood a hush. The only sounds come from the lazy thin clouds ambling above the treetops. Sitting here for a spell is a good idea, but there is work to do.
The branches of the bush peal away to reveal a bed of dried leaves. The bush remains green, but has spots of red. The branches are strong. They never mind my intrusion and wish to be back as they were. The bed of leaves would be better described as a sea. Waves of brown hues crest and fall across the ground. Perhaps they secreted themselves here to avoid the callous broom that cleared the walk? Is this spot of the world a sanctuary from the shroud?
Juggernaut’s hand is lost. Something so small, and brown, is easily lost in such a sea. It is not the end of the world. The art of camouflage is understood at some basic level. The word itself is left unspoken.
Attention returns to what brought us here. The extension cords are in place. Everything is secured with the weather-safe hooks. The switch on the wall plate clicks with familiarity. The silver gray shroud retreats. The small porch glows from the warm bright white lights.
“Those are very pretty papa.”
Yes they are.