I rose early to watch the sun color the trees on the ridge.
Brilliant green and new yellows appear, with one patch of gorgeous orange, like a singular hat in a crowd, stands out.
As I wrote a cool mist entered this room making my left elbow, nearer the window cold. The trees were veiled for a while. Morning took a left turn, a scenic turnout in to softness for a few minutes.
Now we are back to bright.
I am preparing for my Powder Keg Sunday Sessions. Today, seven women will gather to write. We will follow Natalie Goldberg’s advice to,
“Start where we are.”
This is how I begin my daily writing.
Where am I?
What just happened?
What dreams do I recall?
What ideas are taking shape, like the trees on the ridge in early light?
We will do this and so much more today.
But if this were all we did, that would be enough, too.
I wrote the following piece from this prompt earlier this week. I started where I was, and where I was was Housatonic. Since then, I have been up to North Adams for the opening of the paper dress show. I will write more about that this week, but for now, you can go here for a few photos.
And, if you haven’t written yet today or wonder where you could even start, let
Natalie’s prompt light a spark under your pen. I’d love to hear where this takes you.
The Two Photogenic Corners of Housatonic
I sit at the corner of Van Deusenville Road and Main Street in Housatonic. Grilled cheesy air buffets the pink whatchamacallits, passing trucks add to the hubbub, the blooms dancing with diesel fumes. I sit looking towards one of the two photogenic corners of this town, the water tower gloating over the rambling brick buildings. Shades of rust, brick and marble make this neck of the Berkshires a place you could nearly dine in secret. Not as posh as Lenox or as touched by Brooklyn as Great Barrington, so artisan slow local and flannel. Rather, Housatonic is its own version of a working man’s town, formerly very Polish, Irish, Italian and very Catholic. The headstones of St. Bridget’s Cemetery on Front Street read like a passenger arrival list from a ship that ported in New York Harbor, letting out its tired and hungry masses at Ellis Island. The houses in this town are historic. But not having earned any auspicious markers of this history, the trucks rumble through, shaking bricks loose. Poets and potters live here among the lace shawled old ladies. It is an excellent place to hunker down and write, eat a bowl of fresh delicious. I watch women push strollers past. Kids wave out open school bus windows. A small blonde girl dives for her art project from her backpack under the bus seat. She dangles a sparkly blue something out the window. I am glad she doesn’t drop it.
I am here waiting for my slender German daughter to waft over from her ballet class. I wait, writing and working, drinking a rare cup of coffee. They don’t serve brewed tea here in this café. Just the common tea from a box hung on a rack on the wall, which any person with electricity could pass hot water over. I am a snob about hot drinks. I consider this convenience style tea one for thermos’ and not for cafes.
Is this too deep a description of an afternoon where I cannot pry my way off of worry and overwhelm? Does tea really merit a complaint? Does Housatonic and this rowdy corner where a nine-year old boy runs past at least four times, each pass with something different in his hands-a ball, a bike tire, a small box, and lastly, a bottle of soda I hope he doesn’t drop, does Housatonic really deserve this writing? This is a small town, old town, rusty brick town along a golden river where slow motion drafts of scent lollygag on a September afternoon.
September 27, 2014