blow away

a wind sprang high in the west like a wave of unreasonable happiness and tore eastward across england, trailing with it the frosty scent of forests and the cold intoxication of the sea. in a million holes and corners it refreshed a man like a flagon, and astonished him like a blow. in the inmost chambers of intricate and embowered houses it woke like a domestic explosion, littering the floor with some professor’s papers till they seemed as precious as fugitive, or blowing out the candle by which a boy read “treasure island” and wrapping him in roaring dark. but everywhere it bore drama into undramatic lives, and carried the trump of crisis across the world. many a harassed mother in a mean backyard had looked at five dwarfish shirts on the clothes-line as at some small, sick tragedy; it was as if she had hanged her five children. the wind came and they were full and kicking as if five fat imps had sprung into them; and far down in her oppressed subconsciousness she half remembered those coarse comedies of her fathers when the elves still dwelt in the homes of men. many an unnoticed girl in a dank, walled garden had tossed herself into the hammock with the same intolerant gesture with which she might have tossed herself into the thames; and that wind rent the waving wall of woods and lifted the hammock like a balloon, and showed her shapes of quaint cloud far beyond, and pictures of bright villages far below, as if she rode heaven in a fairy boat. many a dusky clerk or curate plodding a telescopic road of poplars thought for the hundredth time that they were like the plumes of a hearse, when this invisible energy caught and swung and clashed them round his head like a wreath or salutation of seraphic wings. there was in it something more inspired and authoritative even than the old wind of the proverb; for this was the good wind that blows nobody harm.

the two ladies disappeared into the house. rather, to speak truly, they were blown into the house. their two frocks, blue and white, looked like two big broken flowers, driving and drifting upon the gale. nor is such a poetic fancy inappropriate, for there was something oddly romantic about this inrush of air and light after a long, leaden, and unlifting day. grass and garden trees seemed glittering with something at once good and unnatural like a fire from fairyland. it seemed like a strange sunrise at the wrong end of the day.
— g.k. chesterton, “how the great wind came to beacon house,” manalive

— — —

dear darling, this was today. i was the girl in blue, my dress tuliping madly as the wind broke my hair in odd angles and i tried to keep contact between my feet and the pavement. only there was no decorative companion in white, and we were not in england.

practicality and responsibility. i wanted to throw them out the window, throw away my shoes and let the wind blow me into a future with a green hill and a picnic blanket, and you standing there beside it barefoot, pantlegs rolled about your ankles, grinning at me madly.

“what took you so long?”

“what took you so long?”

but that was not today. let’s have lots of picnics someday, please? impractical picnics, picnics for no other reason than that we are alive and life is beautiful.

so until then …


— — —


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