You are sitting in a big saggy armchair
In a so-called ‘living’ room.
With beige non-descript walls,
Full of empty picture frames.
Everything feels dull and grey and silent.
It’s so quiet, you think you’ve gone deaf
But then you hear your own blood
Rushing through your veins.
And hear the sound of your own breathing
In and out, in and out.
A weak sunlight insinuates itself
Like an oil slick through the grimy, dust-encrusted widow.
Its path impaired slightly by the saggy yellowing lace curtains
That give the light a mottled washed out look.
It meanders across the wooden slatted floor,
Kicking the dust bunnies out of the way
Illuminating a space in front of where you are sitting.
Your chair is positioned just short of the light.
Wishing for its warmth,
You scrape your armchair across the oak floor
Not caring about the damage it may create –
Towards the pool of sunlight.
Your feet and legs quickly soak in the heat of the Sun’s rays
And you feel warmth return to your lower limbs
And the tips of your fingers.
The afternoon solar warmth kneads in to your cold knuckles and shin bones
You find yourself drifting off to sleep,
Cosy in the bosom of the chair and the soothing fingers of Helios
Suddenly, you find yourself on a Dandelion-covered path
Winding its way through the Autumnal forest
You can smell the slightly sweet organic decay of fallen leaves
Mingled with the smell of pine needles
There’s the sharpness of ice crystals in the air.
Dead leaves are strewn along the forest floor
The slight wind, making them talk –
‘Sussurrar’, they whisper dryly.
They cover the ground between the trees
But strangely – none on the path itself
The ‘coo’ of a Wood pigeon and the grating ‘caw’ of a Crow
Permeates through the still air
But the sound is slightly muffled by the vegetation
As you stand there, suddenly acutely aware of your surroundings
You feel a slight fluttering near your left ear
You subconsciously think it’s a fly –
And bat it away
Then – out of the corner of your eye
You see that it’s a brilliant cobalt-blue butterfly!
It hovers to your left for a moment
As if waiting for your attention
Then flits away along the path in front of you.
You follow, curiosity awakened
You walk along, following the path of the butterfly
Senses heightened by the strange surroundings
Wanting not to lose this blue Lepidoptera
You quicken your pace.
The butterfly lures you to a small clearing
In the middle of an overgrown copse
Raspberry and blackberry vines
Wrap around a small cottage
You have just become aware of
A one-story grey stone dwelling
With a grass roof sloping nearly to the ground
The butterfly skips past you and lands
To rest on the window ledge
You take the unspoken hint
And knock on the weather-beaten wooden door
You hear movement inside
Your mind thinks up terrible visions
A deranged crone? A toothless hermit?
No – for some reason
You know you are safe
The door opens, you step back in surprise
You can’t believe it
It’s her – how can it be her?
You haven’t even admitted to yourself
Until now – that she is HER.
She’s wrapped in a large multi-coloured shawl
The earthly smell of a peat fire wafts passed her and over you
She welcomes you in with a smile
The main room is a hotchpotch of
Farm house and old art room
She offers you a cup of pungent herbal tea
And guides you to a blanket strewn armchair
Next to the blazing peat fire
You talk for what seems like hours
She smells of roses and honeysuckle
It feels so natural that at first you don’t even notice
Just as you feel yourself drifting off
She kisses you gently on the mouth.
You awake, startled – finding yourself
Back in your lifeless living room
The room now sunless and drab
You sigh, then notice a faint smell of roses and honeysuckle
Despite the greyness, you feel a warm glow
And smile contentedly to yourself
You snuggle back into the embrace of the armchair
And drift back off to sleep
Chasing the dream of love in a little cottage.
Chasing a butterfly – home
© Kate McClelland 2015