Sunday, September 04, 2016

It feels a bit like grief (poem - “Summer’s Wake”)


It feels a bit like grief
The first warnings of fall
The sudden chill in the morning air when until yesterday,
There was nothing but heavy, humid, hot air mugging my every breath

I open the door to the front porch and something like a breeze comes toward me
I may even need a sweater, I think distractedly
The crickets are humming
Where have they been?
Hiding until this moment, this moment where the world signals
It will soon be coming to an end
(A fact forgotten while the days were frittered away)
Something else will begin, something equally wonderful
But what of it?
What we have, what we’ve failed to properly exploit
Is dissolving, vanishing, slipping away

What we’ve failed to properly exploit
That’s the source of the nagging feeling as
I follow the breeze's path across the porch, and across my body
The easy way I settle into the wicker chair
With the front door flung open, then left open
And the sudden desire to live my whole life on the porch
(My refuge, but one that goes on an uncanny hiatus during the summer months)
It’s a thought unfathomable just a few short days ago
It’s been so long
So long since that heavy, humid, hot air’s been molesting me

Not that I truly minded
I’ve learned to love the heat, the few moments ventured each day out of our precious AC
Like some last vital untamed element, savage and unapologetic
I’ve come to consider the heat summer’s blanket, 
Its birth mark
Its guarantee that every submersion in water will be a divine communion
A sign, perhaps, that I’ve assimilated
Into that other country, the South
Atlanta, my adult home

But that’s no consolation now that the chill is there every morning when I open the front door
To search for morning glories and the morning paper
Also of no help: Full knowledge of fall's thrilling rhythms
Not yet anyway
Childhood’s delineation of summer as fun and fall as funeral
Has me weeping silently into the breeze

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