The Calm Before the Morning

Morning is a game they play. It is the crossroads of grumpy and hijinks, and there are shoes to be tied, teeth to be brushed, and a number of things that really should have been done the night before. It is the kind of chaos that lends itself to immediate cursing and a lifetime of fond, sweet memories. It starts too early and ends on a dime.

Sometimes there are too many metaphors to bother.

The boys are sleeping now, between mornings and the shadow of them, and the world is quiet save the sound of frogs in the stream outside. The stream was dry just days ago and the frogs were dehydrated and forgotten like so many sea-monkeys on the cusp of greatness — covered in leaves, dust, warts and all. Now the frogs are awake and alive and they want us to know it.

We know. We know.

And the boys sleep on while the world spins constant around them. There are late night projects, glasses of whiskey, promises kept and those unfulfilled. Their breath is a bass line beneath the songs of the night and my keyboard types out like a broken-down piano. Every sound is clear and haunting, every breath a melody. The notes between are soft and silent. They linger until the moon fades, then the sounds are soon to follow.

Morning is a game they play. They will win every single time.



Illustration by Arnold Lobel

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