10 October 2010

fall in california

A ripe pumpkin,
raw, split and steaming
in the Indian summer afternoon
three weeks before Halloween
waits to be made into a pie
with cinnamon and cardamom,
butter and sugar.
Its prodigious vegetable spirit
ascends the redwoods’ summit
to commune with the Sunday sun.
If you climbed so high
into the evergreens,
you, too, could bathe
in the last of the light.

Fall in California is different from Denmark, especially when it still feels like summer (this is our warmest time of year). Wasps are dancing, bugs that look like termites (but aren't) jump onto my shoulders, and dragonflies buzz me like insect police. This place is full of life. It radiates. There are beaches full of beach-sitters watching surfers and there is traffic on the one highway in the middle of a weekday afternoon. I don't know what this means. I would love to see more leaves changing colors but the giant squash in the garden and endless bags of apples are indicator enough of the changing of the seasons. The differences are subtle. 

The sun sets around 6:45, I guess. When I go outside in a t-shirt and leggings late at night to brush my teeth and pee, I imagine that in Copenhagen, now, you can't go outside without a jacket, and I shiver a little. I know the cold is coming here, too, but it's hardly the kind of cold that could kill a man left outside overnight. I want to tell you about how California is not all it's cracked up to be - how it's just a figment of our collective imagination -  but Hollywood is so much more convincing.

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