Shielded behind the rich crimson of the curtains I can hear them. It’s not a memorable anthem they sing and play. But its flavourless repetition oozes the warmth of familiarity. Once again I am grateful for the chance to breathe and see again.
It’s still worth a listen. The pounding traffic rumbles its deep ostinato, punched by the intermittent roar of the brass as the occasional giant fanfares its way down the crowded hill.
The trebles make their random squeals as they bounce along the crumbling pavement for their day’s school.
The orchestra is standard; the size of a modest provincial philharmonic. For I live in a modest provincial town and such modesty bathes me in that warm familiarity. On some days the orchestra grows; the chorus extends to ranks of massed choirs.
When the winds visit, we cannot ignore it. The fences and trees dance with exuberant euphoria, refreshed with their new abundant energy. The awning of the electrical shop, shut behind its folded frame, frantically waves its fringes to the quickening pace of the emerging gale.
There is a constant muted aleatoric drumbeat sounding through the house as the rattling boiler flue brings a taste of the music to the inside.
Then the wind itself sings a wordless passionate anthem across and around the cowering window frames. The poor frames. They take everything.
Large orchestras bring new instruments. There is an unfamiliar percussion as the occasional bin lurches forward and crashes to the ground with the pizzicato flourish of its vile contents swarming over the damp pathway. Then from all of this tidal frenzy we hear the lonely soloist. Scooting from wall to wall, hedgerow to hedgerow and car wheel to car wheel the inevitable but mercurial strain if the empty can cuts through the rambling tutti of our little storm. Coarse yet fluid, it’s mellifluous tones sing of times of loss. It was once loved but now is alone. Someone has left it empty to be pushed about the hard ground. It once sat as proud as a soldier. Someone picked it up with a promise of love. But like so many of its comrades, it was decanted and dispatched.
Above, the racing clouds play hide and seek with the white winter sun. Oh what a sun it is. We crave his warmth and brightness yet when he finally emerges on days like today, he is low and devious. The light is dazzling.
And now, after hearing and witnessing the chaotic vibrancy of a windy winter’s morning, I will find my own comfort through a boiling kettle and a warm brew. Thank-you for reading.