On the curbless corner of Lilac and Jupiter streets was a maple tree with ruby red leaves. Leslie looked at the tree through a bleeding-glass second-floor window of an old white farm house. Her bedroom smelled of chap-stick and printer ink. The radiators quacked while her feet searched for her slippers that lay somewhere underneath a desk of solid oak. Her elbows ached and her head felt like a bowling ball.
For a few seconds there was a man wearing a yellow parka walking a black labrador retriever in Leslie’s view. She mused whether all things in life would feel so fleeting.
Leslie sat up straight, clasped her hands together and took a deep breath. She wanted to write, but nothing was coming. The TV was calling. Her phone had unanswered voicemails. The kitchen needed to be cleaned. There were indefinite distractions queued and waiting for her attention. But, she couldn’t bring herself to focus on any one thing except the vision of that yellow man with the black dog walking by the red tree. The colors of fall. If the temperature was colder maybe the image would have frozen in the pane of glass she looked through.
There was a knock at the door. Leslie jumped. Her back shuddered and she blinked hard.