I could hardly see the ground beneath my feet. The mud, sucking to soles of my sandals, the knee-high thistle keeping my skin on edge. We turned around faced the headlights that illuminated the slope of the hill before it. I was startled, I did not remember the moments that had occurred just before: how did I get to this field. Why did the night sky look so unfamiliar? His words struck a comforting fear within me. “Where the hell did I put the keys? Fuck. Alright good, lets go” The keys go into the ignition.
I do my best to scout any piping we may run over. We nearly miss in a couple of spots. “Every 40 feet there is a spigot, we run nearly 400 feet of pipe,” his window still down as a spray of residual water enters the car. “Pressure will die soon.” We rock our way back to the pavement.
I am back at the ranch, everything is dark, lights are off. The dogs are barking unevenly. I enter the gate, head to the basement, collect their bowls and feed them in their pecking order. A wet nose meets my shin to remind me who is my favorite.
My eyes readjust to total darkness, the thought of fear enters possible, I stop thinking.
My legs move through the hay, that familiar hay, the stars have retaken their position, I feel warm. I begin to feel nostalgia; the thought of leaving the late night walks lit by the stars and the photovoltaic lights of the outhouse. Losing the chores of hauling water, groceries, trash; my perpetually dirty feet; Harper, a leash, a collar.
I miss it, its immediacy can only further, its intimacy only dilute. I lose track of time, of space, of direction. I make notice of horizon lines, of deepness versus darkness, expansion and entrapment.
I still haven’t decided where I will go, the open space my eyes cannot decipher beckons to my other senses. I follow my route home, into comfort, familiarity, silence.
I wish to leave the door open, but I always close it behind me.