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Ode to Summer

July 3, 2008
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In honor of the best holiday ever (bbq, hot dogs, potato salad, apple pie, vanilla ice cream, sparklers, fireworks, carnivals, action movies, light out until 9 o’clock, baseball, watermelon, live music, *marching bands*…I rest my case), an ode:

Summer

The swing creaks gently,
the world moves slowly left to right.
earth covered toes drape over the armrest
at the end. a hand trails
in the cool grass. a page turns,
time passes, not in hours-but in chapters
the sun sinks below the mountains
darkness peeks around the corner
makes sure it is safe, and swiftly
tiptoes its way into the open.
the heat outlasts the light
blanketing everything in a thick
mosquito-filled haze. the sprinkler
makes its slow precise arc, clattering
and clicking, the water showers
the pavement, moves on, making shallow
puddles in the tomato patch
before whooshing back to begin again.
the crickets begin their night-long
symphony as soft light begins to glow
from the Chinese lanterns
a few yards down. children
race their bikes in the street,
the clicking of the cards in the spokes
is barely audible over the sound
of their laughter.
the screen door slams
and knowing hands light the candles
on the table, then the tiny barbecue.
the coals glow, sparks flutter into the
sky, joining the fireflies in their dance.
the night is lazy, filled with heat,
broken only by a soft breeze,
too light
to lift the arms of the
leaf-leaden trees. it provides
little relief; a book becomes a fan,
the power lines overhead begin to hum
as air conditioners are set on high
and summer is infinite

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