June 11th, 2007



No clouds above, the sky is pure pale blue, its hem touched with lavender, with rose, with gold. The sun slants shadows long across the grass. Shadow trees with flickering leaves. Every country road is lined with tall, feather-tassel-topped grasses, bowing in the wind of the car's passing. They dance a subtle sine-wave both fore and aft. Insects buzz and skip and copulate, it's their season and they know it, though everything is green and lush, they've not eaten their fill yet. Bright red poppies, like drops of blood, like sun-kissed rubies, stitch up the edges of all the fields; imagine if it were the other way round: fields of poppies edged in wheat and timothy.

The horses behind us come whinnying, running from the far fields into the pasture, knowing its nearly time to be called in, given oats or grain or hay or whatever it is horses get these days. The light filters through the pine trees, through the green of the bird cherry, it slants across the screens stretched tight over the windows, it midases everything, everything to gold.

The smell of honeysuckle jerks me back to childhood, riding my bike around Grandmother's block. I wonder if the morning glories that covered the back fence behind the garage are still there, opening and closing like flower-headed baby birds in slow, slow-motion. The porch, which I remember as being deep, green and cavernous was floored in green indoor-outdoor carpeting, hard and scratchy to lie on. Around the side of the house, the side where the neighbor with the dozen papillon dogs lived, was a huge patch of lily-of-the-valley. Sharp pointed leaves with tiny white pearl treasures stalked and cool in the shade.

Summer was running down the hill with Heidi, our German shepherd, flying on the other end of the leash. Flinging yourself to the ground in a breathless heap among the dandelions. Lying there in the sun, with your arms flung across your eyes for shade, panting in the heat, the dog lying panting beside you, and all around you the smell of clover and the fresh-baked yeasty smell of your own skin in the sunshine, freckled and golden-brown.

It's the time of grasshoppers leaping in the tall grass, and fat soft bumblebees heavily swooping and stooping, pollen-bound. It's the time of slow-roasting afternoons on the deck with a sweating glass of water, leaving rings on the wooden arm of the lawn chair. It's the time of still, cooling evenings of relief with hot air balloons appearing like multi-colored miracles where there was nothing but blue sky a moment before.

Blackbird Singy, Bumblebee Swingy Birthday Wishes to anniz!