Doug Bruns

Posts Tagged ‘summer’

…they carried on.

In Life, Travel, Writing on August 14, 2012 at 6:00 am

Fulton, Maryland

It was hot today and the work suffered. I suffered. But not as much suffering as the small crew of men I’d hired to cut the fallen trees, strip the limbs, and carry it all into the woods, suffered. The temperature rose to over ninety and they brought no water. For a moment we considered going to get them water. Imagine: Going to get them water! Water was at the ready. Tap. How have we come to a place where one drives to a store to get water? Instead, Carole filled a pitcher and grabbed some cups and took it to them.

By mid-afternoon we were spent and finished. But they carried on.

Evening found me sitting and pondering the sky. The trees were filled with the sound of cicadas and the horizon was alive with tree swallows, darting there and there again. Above them, far above them, the silver fuselage of a jet traversed the sky. Listing rays of evening light reflected off it and I discerned it heading west. It was at altitude already and I could only image that it was from Europe and heading to maybe Chicago or even a direct flight, Paris to San Francisco. It was the middle of the night for the people at thirty-thousand feet. Would they land fully awake and excited and push off on an adventure, as I like to do? Or would they be irritable and tired and sleepless and wonder why do this, go places and spend time away from home and the comforts of home and the dog and the toothbrush at attention and waiting? Who’s to say? Regardless, this was my thought after a long day of labor and an evening contemplating the sky with a tall glass of Maker’s and a dog hungry for bed.


In Life, Nature on June 18, 2011 at 7:54 pm

I sat outside under the canvas covering our balcony this evening as a storm rolled through. It came easily enough, the storm, though we had been told to expect it all day. And finally it came. It began with a rumbling and with the rumbling Lucy darted inside, but I stayed and read on; then the rain grew heavier and the canvas became saturated and began to leak and I took inside my phone and returned to my seat. And the rain grew heavier and as it beat on the canvas overhead I closed my eyes and occasionally the canvas leaked above me so I took my book and tucked it up under my fleece, as it was cool enough to wear a light fleece still, and as I sat with my eyes closed the rain beat on and when I opened my eyes I saw a single gull in the dark sky soaring, it’s wings not flapping, and I had to image what it must be like to be in the air, suspended, while pelted by the rain. The other gulls, of which there are normally many, were nowhere to be seen, but for this one, defying the rain and the storm and the stories’ high clouds and the rumble of thunder. And when I lifted my eyes, even though it was still raining heavily, there was a patch of blue sky to the west and through it the sun shown and a rainbow appeared, arcing from Peaks to South Portland, across the river Fore and Casco Bay, a full arc, firmly planted there and here.  I was being splattered by rain and the waterway in front of me was dimpled and corrugated and I cannot remember being so alive and so close to the elements; even when out on the trail and in my tent, or in a canoe, I cannot remember being so close to heaven and earth. The rain fell heavy and thick and each drop seemed intent on rushing faster than gravity could pull it, as if each drop had a mind of its own and was thinking, I’ll show you. There is a cruise ship in town and I thought of the passengers rushing to their comfort and their dinners and their cabins, thinking that perhaps the day had ended badly. But for the day had ended with an exclamation, a statement that nature cannot be ignored forgotten or even, for that matter, desired otherwise. It was not good nor was it bad. It simply was. Rain and the gull and the rainbow and feeling as if: This is the stuff of life, heavy and real and not to be ignored.

Tonight, 8.27.09

In Mythology on August 27, 2009 at 11:12 pm

The Pretender has returned and the fishermen are off-loading the lobster. They had to go out far today, I’m told, and though I don’t know what that means exactly, I hold visions of rolling seas and high sun and salt in the air far from the mainland. I will need a fleece tonight, like I did this morning while walking Maggie. I can’t image this summer coming to an end.

I made pouched salmon steaks tonight with a butter sauce. The sauce needed a quarter of white wine, and of course the rest of the bottle, well, it couldn’t go to waste and the cook was thirsty and of course it is gone now and so the night rolls in and my coffee will soon be whisky and my cigar gone, but Ray LaMontagne will continue to sing in my ears regardless of the sunset, the cigar, the drink, the wine.

The ancients saw the end of summer as the end of life and the end of everything alive above the earth; they saw youthful maidens adorning themselves with wings and preparing to fly off, leaving, them, us, behind. So, tonight, the maidens are across the water and if I squint and look directly I can see them checking their harnesses and getting ready to flee. Wait!–not yet. You are not to go just this soon. Stay a while, please. Please.