1 January 2014
you get up at 6 and move around quietly and go out into the intense white light from the streetlamps. some people are sitting outside on a small roof at the front of their house. it must be quite warm. you begin to run slowly around the corner, through the open gate into the park. the lamplight reaches in from the edges, the paths are bright and slick. planes are passing over every few seconds. their lights appear descending from the right and coming towards you from the east, in small clusters of white green and red. as each one passes and flies away, you listen involuntarily for a period of quiet after its sound dies away, knowing that moment will not arrive. you pass the hospital with its pattern of lit and curtained windows, and turn up to where a blackbird is singing beside the stream of traffic on denmark hill. you think about don kroodsma's study of american robin song, and you wonder about studying the song of the blackbird. cutting away from the track towards a darker area, immediately your feet begin to make mushy impacts on the wet ground. you run slowly uphill and turn right along the top of the park, back into streetlights, along the broken row of ashes to the bench by the gate. it was raining steadily at midnight. the ground by the bench is scattered with corks and poppers.
it is light. a woodpigeon is calling from behind the house. ash keys and bare branches in front of an overcast sky. you're cold. you want to go back to sleep.