As winter ends, winter starts again. Late March warmth lies with coughs and fever, face-grey shadows darken longer days, and high-sky sun shines on windowless wards. Hospital green is the season’s colour.
Garden foxes play in rose-dawn light, rising doubt hangs in latent streets, odd wasps drift between blossoms spreading and seeding unwanted fruit, and the numbers explode like purple globes of allium blooms.
Thoughts of renewal are not what they were: first-cut strips of grass mask earth beneath and, at a safe distance, tender leaves grieve. Summertime begins. Winter starts again.
Nights are the worst: dark acres of time are unfilled with anything but low noise as cars burr along the northbound carriageway.
Mum is cold, anxious in unsettled grief. There’s no point getting up: without him there’s nothing to do. Days see diversions but now, why does sitting there beat lying here?
Wide awake in darkness she heard herself say: “Dada?” and reach out her hand. He used to take it and warm it. This cold, Dada-less night, as she reached for him again, he warmed her again. The sheets softened, the noises dissolved and she stopped thinking. She felt him, she knew he was nearby and she slept.