a picture on Instagram is captioned “one fall day,” and i balk at that in my head. it’s late summer! it was 95 degrees Fahrenheit a few days ago! it’s still a couple of weeks to the equinox! but then, today, the air rushing through the open window makes me wish for socks.

late evening, cold enough to want a cardigan. Neighbor Kitty comes to the door asking to play. i rush out into the garden, wiggle-waggle his stick for him; he flies about, pounces, leaps; the storm door gently whooshes open and close, and M is sitting on the porch steps watching us. when Neighbor Kitty’s interest in the stick slows, i throw it down the walk for him to chase, make my way to M, settle on the step below him. nestled between his knees, his arms crossed in front of my chest, warmth on my chilly skin. chats of nothing, baked pasta waiting on the stove.

a half dozen times a day, i think something dear, something puzzling, something i mustn’t forget; so i add it to my pile of open-ended thoughts and hold them against my chest. soon there are too many, and i must continually stop–retrieving, juggling, losing my place–until i’m too full to know which thoughts i’m made of. so i must write to keep moving, to keep ahold of who i am.