I smell the Ticonderoga pencil shavings already and summer’s great keening begins.
The season is nowhere over, yet it is aging. Surrounded by the lemon-yellow-forest-green-cornflower-burnt-sienna colors swirling around me in the all-new-all-same-mass Crayola aisle. Even as I buy what is required, I disappear into my own summer place.
In the waning days, we are gathering our harvest buckets, our pickling salts, and inner-tube patches. We are ready for something to die again.
The summers of yesterday– whether we are 20 or 80– wait in our memories like still life. Perfect hard confectionary, twisted inside a cellophane wrapper. A permanent lost anticipation.
They’ve lost the bright heat of concrete noontime. And the sangria reds of the lake sunsets. They are behind us, in the albums of already. They bleach and blanch entirely, monochrome, with twinkles of silver in the edges of our memory.
Now, where the morning light touches the water, the memory flashes in brightest white. Where the canoe glides into the shade of a tree’s arch, it disappears into the blackness.
Summer belongs to the juicy, hand-picked moments of immediacy, and then, to the permanent archive of memory.