The World Begins and Stops at the Edge of My Bed

We are enjoying a glorious Indian summer, with warm afternoons, blue skies, and turning leaves.

But mornings there is a slight chill in the air – just enough to warrant a blanket for sleeping. I wake early – a side benefit of the switch in daylight savings. The cat hears me get up and scratches at the door.

Husband stirs and I slip back under the covers to nuzzle. In the room above our heads, steps of son the younger. They move down the stairs, and into our bed. He too slips under the covers. I pull the blanket up over his shoulder and rest my hand on it.

Husband strokes my ear with his nose. The cat joins us on the bed, settling in the space between my son’s back and my belly. He lies across my arm, a warm weight.

The breathing of son, husband, and cat slows. Husband’s fingers twitch within my palm, then lie heavy.

In the sound of their respiration, I feel the universe expand, then contract.

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