The half-light of a winter morning swallows the stars, revealing a world frosted with white. The dog, redefining the phrase ‘global warming’, lays across the threshold, letting the heat escape from my comfort zone. Cold seeps in, reality nips at my fingers and mind.
The seasons meet on my threshold; only a transparent veil of glass separates me from the winter. Whatever the weather, comes into the room to be a part of my living space and yet its changes do not touch me until I open the doors and invite Nature in. Winter is cold… the warmth of my home no more than a reassuring illusion, and one easily shattered by a dog hell-bent on answering the siren-song of morning.
The doors stand open, more often than not, in both winter and summer. In part, that is because of Ani, who prefers to be a free-range dog whenever possible. Often, though, it is my own choice. The voices of my little world are very different when the doors stand open. In the ‘human’ world, the only sounds are mechanical… the hum of the aquarium, the clicks and whirrs of appliances and computer, the ticking of the clock and the constant whine of tinnitus. Outside, there is chaos… the cows on the farm across the field, a riot of birdsong and the eerie cries of peacocks. Red kites cry overhead by day, owls and foxes at night. And underpinning it all is the ever-changing song of the wind that howls, sighs and whispers through the branches.
With the door open, Nature comes in, bringing with her all manner of small creatures, from birds and butterflies to spiders and the occasional slug. Within my room there are yet other worlds behind glass that I can observe but not fully enter. The fish watch me from their temperate environment and we communicate only by sight, care and nourishment. There are worlds both illusory and real behind the screens of the computer and TV. Worlds where I cannot control events, but which I touch through choice alone.
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