Out on the deck, the seedlings in my miniature lettuce garden--four brief rows of mesclun, arugula, kale, chard--have broken out into their first true leaves, tiny replicas of the plants to come. I am longing for someone to arrive at my door with an armload of lilacs. At home I would have been cutting fresh flowers every day, but all I can do now is to steal a whiff over other people's fences.
I have noticed that this town is full of mockingbirds, many of them living in the brushy areas down by the bay. A mockingbird is a bit like a socialized thrush. In Harmony, in the quiet damp of the evening, I would hold my breath, waiting to hear the invisible thrush sing. But a mockingbird flits boldly from crabapple to lamp-post, cocking his tail and pouring out his comic repertoire. Sometimes he even seems to follow me as I walk, bouncing from tree to post to tree, crying out, "Wait! Here's another one!"
Yesterday I borrowed three more Penelope Fitzgerald novels from the library. Apparently I am in a mood. Or maybe I just need a smart woman's voice to balance out this Philip Roth novel I am reading. Sabbath's Theater is more or less an old man's version of Portnoy's Complaint. In other words, it's obnoxious on purpose, and that is tiring.
Later this afternoon I'll be heading north for band practice, so you're unlikely to hear from me tomorrow morning. I hope your day has some mockingbird in it.