Autumn is for slowing down

5:30 am, morning, yet dark as black night, coffee brews, its aroma an enchantment. I wish we didn’t have to wake the boys, shattering their comfort, though I’m excited to share the first edge of sunrise together, and we have no choice today.

On a nearly empty highway, we drive daddy to work. Rustling a drowsy silence, D asks me to sing something. My husband and I sing that prayer comparing children to flowers in a garden.

Home now, from a mostly quiet ride through a dawn-blue fog spreading out over fields on both sides of us, D and M lie down beside me on our dining table converted into a bed. As they sleep, refolding into dreams, I pray; for my mother, my family, my world. Then I stretch out beside them and drift away to the sound of rain on the roof top, planes overhead, the sad and lovely whistle of a freight train rumbling past close enough for me to reach out one sleepy hand and touch its peeling orange paint.

We wake before noon, though not by much. M recounts his dreams, looking to a far corner to retrieve fleeting images, speaking in slow syllables. When he has spent a slumber’s tale, I move to the couch to write notes and D and M, their red sweatshirt hoods still framing small faces, stay in bed, D telling an attentive M a made-up adventure story.

Hours later, we are still quietly in the embrace of a lazy, cool autumn day.

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