It's been windy and squally, wound down into cold and the odd gust, the sun low and molten. Pluvialis points to a sun dog on the way. The fens that I have grown to love for their mud-pie and dishwater palette are absurd in saturated technicolour. Muddy track rambles like chocolate between hedgerows resplendent with blood-drop hips and haws, chicory flowers and foamy yarrow. A rainbow arcs over fields pinked with clover blossom. Mabel is tall and spined with excitement, all Oreos and marshmallow, a chip of pointed chocolate. A cocked firearm, sweetmeats and confectionery. Shadows long in the cocoa puddles.
We walk. Pluvialis just ahead, me a deferential four paces behind, wide to off-slip, the hunter's Japanese wife. Mabel parallaxing, eyes silver dollars on points to infinity. Pluvialis speaks to me with an open hand, a head turn, we are silent in the corduroy buzz of grass and I feel like a Marine.
A rabbit appears out of the grass like post-war animation, flecky golden brown a sheaf of wheat toasted, impossible flash of white, fuzzy broad soles of its great thumpers, perhaps I don't see that, bells ring invisibly as Mabel is slipped, flattened soft ears propelling downwind over the clover and stubble. No time has passed they are down the slope together and furred haunches contract and they fly in moments together and her tail opens and no time has passed.
She is in the grass. The rabbit is in the hedge.
We walk quietly in the mud. It spatters rain, beading on her scapulas.
I thought for sure she had it, says Pluvialis.
In sickness and in health
2 months ago