Every season brings a new sleepless night. It seems to me that just before every equinox or Solstice, I have this; trouble sleeping, coupled with an unreasonably early rise. It's 4:30 am right now, I should be sound asleep. There is something in the turn of the season that wakes me up. Makes me restless. Everything shifts. The smells in the air change, the density of sunlight, the sounds of the wind, my dreams, and the times and pathways of the Moon and Sun across my sky. New emotions wiggle up and old ones play uncomfortable roles of nostalgia, like old costumes with no play. The crickets still sing, and even louder is the grey tree frog which has given me a few terribly sleepless nights lately with it's forceful volume and relentless two-tone trill. I love frogs, but I wish this one would move further from my house.
The rain is doing them well, I suppose. This weird rain. Almost every day has been beautiful; hot and sunny, sometimes hazy and more humid, and some days are so perfect I wonder where I am. But around 5:00, the clouds roll in, the thunder rumbles like a Giant's hungry stomach, and the lightning cracks like an angry schoolhouse yardstick. The storms come as if they are visiting from Florida or the Islands - not like our native storms - they feel bizarrely tropical. Their strength much greater than I remember. The rain dumps down in heavy bucket fulls and the wind blows it right into the windows. The plants once upright in pride are flattened. The longest days of sunshine are cut off by 6pm to host the darkness of the storms.
Once the heart of it passes, the trickle continues through the night, as if someone forgot to turn the hose off. The freshly bathed air sifts through the screens and lays itself on my restless body, like damp silk, calling me out of bed before dawn. As I type, I see the mist above the river, between the trees, yawning with a faint glow of slate blue. The earliest of the birds have begun their harmony. In a few moments, the coyote will be asleep again, and the bear, if there were any, visible from a safe distance. I can step outside and greet the emerging season. I can wash my face in the cool dew from the plants. I can wish for every day to feel like this air, this immortal water and precious earth, and this strange fire it makes in my heart.