Blue sky back, sharp-angled shadows on the stones of the church across the street, pigeons sunning on the heads of the saints and martyrs. While I wait for the kettle to boil  I look out the kitchen window at the round, clock-face thermometer on the back porch: 40° it says. That would be fahrenheit.

The clockface--picture an old-style schoolroom clock-- comes down to me from my maternal grandparents'; it is homemade. My grandfather was something of a handyman. It has some tiny black and white snapshots of the family home in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan (Canada) and my grandparents, my mother and my aunt and is dated 1928. The pictures are somewhat roughly cut out of bigger pictures.  I lived in that house for the first years of my life. My father was overseas and my mother was not supposed to be pregnant: "We thought you'd wait," my mother told me (late in her life; she was not necessarily a reliable narrator) her parents told her when she turned up pregnant after my father's deployment. "Wait," I guess, till the war was over, in case she needed another husband, which would be easier if there wasn't already a child in tow. Or at least that's how I heard the story. My younger sister's version is that our grandmother gave our mother hell for being with child. Who knows where the truth lies? 

Anyway, 40° fahrenheit this morning, sharp shadows, harpsichord music from the living room where my husband is practicing (practising?)