• Wesley Snedeker

*lights



Lights, hypnotic in the grey woods, show me briefly what I’m missing in the fading day. And in what feels like the evening's 27th hour, the tiniest shred of sun still skips across the lake.

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Our numbers have changed and our formations are different—the grey woods are different now, too—but this place is still a refuge or an axis mundi or an eschaton. The songs I set adrift into the emptiness are different, as are my relationships with each of them. The tent I’ve pitched and the warmth within it, the words I bring and the space to meet them, the place I leave and my knowledge of it have all transformed. Or perhaps they haven’t—maybe they’ve evolved or even clarified, despite my feeling untethered and floating weightless into the slate above me.

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My method of return has changed, or perhaps it’s the arrival that’s different. People know I’m gone now and mark when I get back. People I know will come and go and get lost and found again by the time I come home. I hear something crunch across the ground beneath me and know I will soon have to land. But I’m not here to be among dead leaves but live ones which snag my clothes as I surrender to these new physics.

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I start to fall, I think, and mourn whichever thing I’m falling from. I am enveloped in late-sky clouds and the mist chills me to the bone, but I bask in the stillness of escape from direction. The sky crackles under my feet and, for a moment, I’m 10 again. And the cold pulls me inward, and my new ground gives out. And as my head emerges from the gentle current, I yank my feet out of the muddy orange and peer into this old and newness.


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I’m greeted by gentle hypnosis—lights twinkling in the grey woods.

 

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