rejectomorph (flying_blind) wrote,

The Late Hour

Early risers have been stirring for a while now. Sound carries well in the cold, dry air which has followed the recent storm. I hear the morning papers being delivered, the cars following their routes, describing the pavements on which they roll; the smooth main road, the bumpier side streets, the gravel lanes. Intermittently, there is the slap of bundled news on driveways. Later, I hear front doors close after the papers have been fetched to steamy kitchens where coffee must be brewing and toast popping up (though I don't hear that.) From closer by, I do hear pipes gurgling and the rush of a shower and a flushing toilet. An aluminum framed window slides open, or shut. A car door slams on the next block, and then the engine comes alive, and the tires crunch on the driveway and rumble on the street and fade with the engine's hum into someone's commute. Other doors, then, and other cars, and a dog barking. The grinding sound of a garage door opening, followed by the scrape of a trash can being dragged to the street. Footsteps. Someone coughs.

The air is perfectly still but for these tremulous vibrations of sound, the wind which flowed for much of the night having ceased. I see none of this activity, but the town seems pressed near in the vast dark. The softer sounds of deer and other nocturnal creatures do not reach me from the nearby woods and fields, but I know that they prepare for sleep as I do, even as the town awakes. I go into the house, where the closed windows will dampen the noise of daily life. Maybe I won't dream the dreams of the deer, but I think it unlikely that I will dream the dreams of the townsmen, either. The paths I walk in sleep are my own, and seldom peopled. Neither man nor beast, I think, will follow me there.

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