I’ve taken a lot of classes in creative writing, but only one in writing poetry. The class gave me two things. (1) It firmly established that I am not a poet. (2) It gave me Oct. 10.
Rather, it gave me a poem called “Oct. 10” about the bright blue sky of autumn and the importance of wrapping the memory of that sky close around you to bring comfort on a white winter day. For whatever reason, that phrase stuck with me and from it I created my own personal holiday. Every year, on or around Oct 10, wherever I have lived and whatever I have been doing, there has always been one of those gorgeous cool clear autumn days. I’d call in sick. I’d ignore household chores. It was my own personal day off, a celebration of all things beautiful, and every year I found a way to take at least part of the day and make it mine.
Until this year. I’ve moved to a location with colder weather and far more trees. October started out cool and rainy and I was worried that my special holiday might not even happen here. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Once the rain passed, the daytime sky settled in to bright blue while the leaves around me danced from golden to orange to burgundy, and I went into holiday mode. And couldn’t come out of it. I mean, I knew it had been over two weeks since I started celebrating, but it still felt like Oct 10 and so I spent day after day on my front porch staring at a deep blue sky. I intended to be writing, I really did. I had plenty else that needed to be done. But damn, it was Oct 10 and I needed to enjoy every bit of it.
The rain and cold finally came back of course, and today I made a nice detailed list of everything I have got to get done. It felt good to get organized again; I’m one of those people who likes that feeling. It’s November, and time to move on. But what a great Oct. 10! I hope it lasts as long next year.
(If you like the idea of declaring a personal holiday, check out my post for 2012, when Oct 10 didn’t come until Oct. 28.)