Time is Not Flying

September 24, 2015

This has been a stressful time for me. I bought a house, and the ensuing paperwork and details are mind-numbing. The thought of moving gives me stomach pain. This morning alone, I got six phone calls related to the purchase. So how to find peace, and not succumb to a panic attack, and ignore the right wing bigots currently dominating public discourse, and stay sane?

This morning, the four sipping stations of my hummingbird feeder were occupied by four dog-eye sulfur butterflies, elegant in billowing yellow and eye-spotted wings. They didn’t glide to the feeder as much as float, wings rising and falling and filling with breeze, cream yellow parachutists.

Rubythroated hummingbirds approached the feeder in a line, like planes awaiting landing at an airport. Normally, they attack interlopers, but the butterflies seemed to confuse them—hence the eyespots. What a miracle is evolution, a timeless thing of elegance and persistence.

Honeybees also fed, ceding territory to no other creatures. Some of them crawled into the sipping ports, a couple of them drowned in sugar water. I have a jar of locally produced honey in my kitchen; I approve of bees even though I’m allergic. The birds and butterflies gave wide birth to the hungry honeybees.

Fall is a somnolent time, an extended nap for the natives, to fatten and energize for the coming winter. Fall is a furious time for migrating souls anxious to fill up and pump up and bulk up for thousand mile journeys.

For house buyers.

Sound is crisp and sharp: the crackle of the browning grasses, the brittleness of the turning leaves, the dry whir of grasshopper wings, the violin scrape of crickets, the ricochet of falling acorns.

The hottest day is dry and dreamy. The weirdest games debut: nut kicking, leaf catching, puff ball squeezing, frog belly scratching, praying mantis petting.

I will rake my own leaves, shovel my own snow, grow my own vegetables, sit on my own porch, listen to the wind in the corn across the highway, be naked, hug my own trees. If I live to next week.

Embrace it all or crawl under the blankets—either way, time is not flying is flying.




About Eugene Jones Baldwin

I am a writer: non-fiction, fiction, journalism (Alton Telegraph), essays (The Genehouse Chronicles) and have a website: eugenebaldwin.com. I've published a couple dozen short stories and had eleven plays produced. Current projects: "Brother of the Stones" (available on Kindle), a book of short stories; "The Faithful Husband of the Rain, short stories"; "A Black Soldier's Letters Home, WWII,;" "There is No Color in Justice," a commentary on racism; "Ratkillers," a new play. I am an avocational archaeologist and I take parts of my collection of several thousand Indian artifacts (personal finds) to schools, nature centers, libraries etc. and talk about the 20,000 year history of The First people in Illinois. (See link to website) I'm also a playwright (eleven plays produced), musician, historian (authority on the Underground Railroad in Illinois, the Tuskegee Airmen) and teacher.
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