Wednesday, December 28, 2005

A View From Above; the "Eagle"

The brown leaves whirl and rustle on the recently blacktopped road of the New Forest Cemetery. I walk along a grassy stretch, and it is tantalizingly quiet here until I hear a car rolling along on the gravelly roads nearby. I look up to see a dirty white compact car with a lone driver zip along on the road just above the Rathbone monument. Above me the grey skies are stirring and churning, occassionally revealing hints of blue skies beyond. A burst of sunshine pierces the clouds for a few seconds and highlights a white birch tree which seemingly glows and basks in the warm golden glow of the sun.

I am unsettled as it is late autumn again. Autumn is a season of contrasts here in Upstate, New York. A season which starts out with beautiful vibrant colors as leaves turn magnificent shades of yellows, reds and oranges accentuated by deep blue skies, and then transitions to overcast brown and grey brooding landscapes and skies. The air becomes bitterly cold as the onset of winter approaches, and my mood seems to change with the season as I anticpate the five or six months of winter to come. Geese fly overhead somewhere in the swirling clouds above and are only given away by their honking, and I pause to search the skies to see them as I feel a longing to somehow go south with them.

It is getting colder and darker as I walk along the quiet road and push on to the top of the hill.
The silhouette of the "Eagle" becomes clearer as I approach the top . A forbidding darkness has settled in around me as I stand next to and under the outstretched wings of the "Eagle". I look down on the city lights below and at the traffic winding down into the other side of the Mohawk Valley. Looking down at the twinkling lights and the glow of the city from here, all the flaws of the city are hidden.

I shiver as the city is truly beautiful and inspiring and I am also quite chilled. I head down the hill and melt into the darkness again while reflecting on the images of the city lights, the silhouette of the "Eagle", the sun-drenched white birch tree, and the honking geese. I step out of the cover of trees onto the broken sidewalk and into the amber streetlights and the flourescent glow of the convenience store across the street.
Pat Huther

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