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The Window

Inside me there is a window. I can picture it quite clearly: tall and narrow, it opens down the center like shutters, and on either side are eight square panes framed in wood painted bright white. Outside is the moon, somewhat more than a crescent, waxing. This window has been closed for a long time, and I have knelt on the striped cushion of the window seat, my elbows on the sill, thinking and planning and dreaming as I watch the stars wheel. But I’ve never had the courage to reach up and open the latch.

But in the past couple days I feel it’s happened. This window is open now, though I’m not sure I was the one to do it. But I see it: the left side only slightly pushed in but the right side more than a little flung open, the requisite filmy drapes stirring in the breeze. The air is fresh but also cold; it startles and chills me. I am not completely convinced I like it.

Very faintly comes the smell of moist earth. There is grass out there, hedges combed in moonlight.

I am conflicted. Do I shut the window and stay in my cozy den? It is warm here, a known quantity. Or do I open the window the rest of the way, get accustomed to the cool night air, the strange sounds and smells, and perhaps at some later date venture out?



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