It’s been over a week of record high temps. I do mean well over a hundred for most of June. I recently traveled to La Grande, to meet with a friend of mine who has family in the area and is traveling further to Lincoln City, Oregon. Hot. It was hotter than those inedible Takis burn holes in your tongue snacks. La Grande is in the mountains. I do not recall my undergrad town being almost too hot to go outside, not even once. In June. Or any other summer month. Unusual weather we’re having here in the West.
So, here’s a poem. I have no idea where this one arrived from. But here it is. Maybe it’s a bit of nostalgia. My family would gather, both sides, during holidays. My grandfather loved loved loved Fourth of July. Both did, actually. But my dad’s dad would order fireworks, then delight in shooting them off or having one of us light the fuse. Roman candles, those ones that spin and fly, bottle rockets, everything illegal that would set giant fires, woot woot. Maybe I am missing the sense of celebration, family now scattered or passed on…maybe maybe maybe. That careless ignorance that such gatherings would never stop. Of course they do. Time marches like a savage merciless army through everything and everyone, after all.
JESSICA IN THE GARDEN
Catnip and thyme, basil and lavender.
Her left hand tugs at the leaves,
caresses the stems.
She will smell like spaghetti sauce
and old lady purses
when she wanders by.
She eats a banana while standing on one leg,
her eyes on the cat chasing the dog
through the new mown grass.
They put bananas on hooks,
some sly wit tells the child.
Maybe that’s where bananas go,
before arranging the rocks she painted
into odd and various piles.