Growing Season

Katherine Blake

Dorothy J. Heydt

By day she finished her story and sent it out to meet its deadline, coped with an invasion of ants in the kitchen, fed the cat and washed the dishes, and dug the Bermuda grass out of another yard of her bank. By night she traced a slow basse danse under the wind while the oxalis danced the wild galliard.

By the third morning or so she realized why the dream was so frightening---not counting that she was obviously trailing the kid who'd driven the car. One of the basse danses she'd learned in that class had come out of the plague years: the Dance of Death. Slip and slide, your face averted from your partner's: up and down, hands linked, faces turned away till the very end. Reprise: out to arms' length, turned away; reprise: gather your partner in, turn inward to see that he wears the mask of Death. And so do you.

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