Before I moved here, I never really noticed the wind. When I was younger and living in Oklahoma, I only noticed the wind on cold days; most of the time it seemed calm in my memory. But here in the Fort Worth subdivision, the wind blows constantly. Whether warm or cold, I notice the wind every day I go outside. Around here, the wind blows hard with no large trees to block it, and the numerous houses do nothing to stop it. Going outside in the winter and summer, the wind is most noticeable, whether blowing north or south, whether cutting cold or warm and arid. When I look at the sky, the clouds drift by at a speed I can’t fathom, my gaze watching as they drift beyond my line of sight.
Walking with my sons, the stroller handle gripped in my hands, I am always fighting with the wind while we walk around the subdivision, it buffeting my body while I pull the canopy down to shield the twins. Most times I try to ignore it as best I can as I push, and on cold days the wind cuts razor sharp, speaking in a way I can’t ignore. But there are those days where the wind isn’t so unkind, blowing softly, warmly, like an old friend to visit. It is then I try to embrace it as best I can, to take notice and watch as it touches everyone and everything.
Walking on the creek path under a grove of cottonwoods, the wind rustles low hanging limbs, leaves shaking and calling to one another in hushed whispers. It is that sound I savor the most, the sound of the wind blowing through trees. When I hear it, I become a boy walking home at night under a large pine tree in a neighbor’s yard. Enjoying the night air, the sound rustling the pine needles made me think I wasn’t alone, that some great being was watching overhead, keeping me company as I safely made my way home. That sound carried with me until now, and every time I heard the wind blowing through the trees, for a moment I am a child and everything is good in the world. Pushing my sons, I hope I can share this with them with words when they’re older. For now, I can only share the experience and hope they feel the same way.
This article is from my Subdivision Journal series. I am trying to use mindfulness to observe nature in my neighborhood. Other articles in the series:
An Encounter with a Falcon
Carl Wade Thompson is a poet, essayist, and the graduate writing tutor at Texas Wesleyan University. He has published poetry and memoir essays in The Mayo Review, The Concho River Review, One in Four, Anak Sastra, The Galway Review, The Blue Collar Review, Piker Press, The Eunoia Review, Blue Minaret, Nebo Literary Magazine, Alphelion Literary Webzine, and Labor: Studies in Working-Class History of the Americas. He lives on the outskirts of Fort Worth, Texas. His poems explore the link between the urban and the rural.
Photo by Jasmin Merdan