Dawn

I wrote this about a year ago while listening to “Samson” by Regina Spektor and found it while re-reading my old work. I thought it would be a good place to start the new blog and the new year. Enjoy!

Dawn was her favourite time of day, even though she rarely saw it. There was a freshness to it, a hush that came at no other time. She managed to see it that morning. He’d teased her into bed early last night, although it had been late before they slept, his breath warm on her hair.

She treasured the stillness, there in that half hour before true daylight came. For the other twenty three hours she could hardly sit still for a minute. If she was reading, she played with her bookmark. If she was watching television, she finished a crossword. When she wrote, she chewed on her pens. Even in sleep she moved restlessly, but it didn’t bother him. He could hear the music in the twitching and darting of her mind.

She could see him from where she was curled on the couch, the first golden edges of morning striking the side of his face and sparking lights in his dark hair. He had a gift for stillness. His eyes were closed as his chest rose and fell slowly, his face relaxed as he counted breaths. She felt her heart expand, pushing against the confines of her rib cage as it always did when she caught him in moments like this, without his usual veneer of self-consciousness. It felt as though the world paused in wonder at her sheer joy in loving him.

The room where he sat twined around him like a second skin of warm timber and white plaster and glass. The flatscreens and cables and control boards were softened by the three guitars, the cello, the upright piano, the sheafs of paper and heaps of notebooks; just by his presence. The space was their souls given three dimensions and drawn together. It was where they could give voice to their hearts, even though they could pass days in that room together with barely a word.

The rug was reds and blues and oranges, the first thing they had chosen when they moved here. They’d lain on those colours in the empty room and looked up at the bare bulb hanging from the cathedral ceiling and laughed at nothing. The bulb was no longer bare and the room was crammed with desks and instruments and the trappings of their lives but the rug was still clear. Sometimes, on the late nights when the composing or writing or studying had come to a halt, they’d lie there and talk or laugh or just breathe in each other’s presence.

He began to stir, slowly emerging from his stillness. As if it were a sign, a blackbird trilled outside the window. She untangled herself and padded over the slate of the kitchen floor, always cold against her bare feet. She lit the stove under the silver coffee maker and inhaled appreciatively. Even though she only ever drank tea, the smell of the freshly ground beans was delicious. On the road below, barely visible through the leaves of oak and liquid amber and eucalyptus, the first early car pulled out of its driveway. The blackbird outside was joined by three compatriots, all four industriously displacing the even layer of mulch that had been laid only the evening before.

She leaned against the sink and watched them for a few minutes while the coffee brewed. A kookaburra gurgled a few houses down and a child shouted in the distance. The hills steamed golden in the sunrise, although the valley below was still in deep shadow. There had been a heavy dew last night. She could still smell it, mingling with the scent of coffee and the nectarines in the bowl on the windowsill. It was still early enough in the season that the dew would be burned off completely within the hour.

And then dawn was over and it was daylight.

She heard the pad of his feet behind her and his arms slid around her waist.

“Good morning.”

All Rights Reserved to Cambrey Payne 2015. Please acknowledge your sources when sharing.

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