Paint it Black

By PaintItBlack

Winter Way Out East

"The present, the future, is now". 8.07 on the 107 in Haddington. To me, it's an appropriate sample, as the bass warms through my ears, time and space suspended in fake phosphoresence; outside: snow, country, dark, heads down, another day; inside: wet shoes, wet Metros, pointless world - who gives? Inside I'm in airports before light, brutal lights and bleary brain, still slightly dreaming, time slipped 'til the blurring board conveys 'delayed'. To England. Gatwick. A different dimension. But today, thankfully not. Today into the wild white-blue; space. Reality: sudden school kids, here and gone, on East Linton, off Dunbar, invasion like waxwings on berries. I hated being 14. Didn't everyone? Please change the world. Live with pride and hope and kindness. 

Bang, it's cold! Slush. No golf today. Straight down the fairway. White footsteps betray my trespass. My nowhere; into my stupid world: Way Out East. Sunrise shoots muted lazers across the morning sky. Reach for the rays. Light bursts through, then falls short as cloud covers the born sun, as if the day has decided against it, but comes back in spate; here we go, walk face first into the blaze, orbs of gorse gone orange. After the sun breaks. 

I fail to see birds. It's becoming a habit. I'm not very good at this: six wee grebes in a quarry lake like it's Gorges du Verdun, aqua blue and white. But no spiky-headed black-necked. It has been here for days; it's here tomorrow. Just not for me. Long-tailed ducks, odd not on the sea, dandy black and white, on turquoise. Roe deer, white bummed. Pochards, red-headed, silver-backed, smart. I crouch for coffee, fortified: it's probably the whisky that's why I feel better. Another velvet-gloved morning for me. 

Barns Ness in sun, the wakened day so fresh it's tearful happy. I watch the dump, fly-clouds of gulls, the canyons in the quarry. I look for a lee - the wind is tearing; I hunker shelter-side of the wreck to watch the sea, struggle with gloves; dark chocolate digestives, more coffee; wind in eddying flows, and me. To the north a roar, to the south silent waves. It's a big sea - I guess one must say 'rolling' roiling' - spray shooting up where I look towards Torness. Through the scope it's another world: auks through troughs, winter gannets, divers white-silver daggers. This is where I went when I was 14. Maybe I never left? I hope not. 

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