The Monochrome Summers

At the lake, monochromeShopping at Target for school supplies takes us into the arms of  August, summer’s last great hump.

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.

Other Summers in Black and White… here.

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Elizabeth Howard

Elizabeth writes literary non-fiction, haiku, cultural rants, and Demand Poetry in order to forward the cause of beautiful writing. She teaches and speaks about the rhetorical impact of beautiful writing. A recent transplant to Connecticut, she calls London, Kansas City, and Iowa home.

 

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  3 comments for “The Monochrome Summers

  1. Lisa Hill
    August 18, 2010 at 5:51 am

    Beautiful imagery,E. “Permanent lost anticipation” says it all. Even surrounded by all the beauty that is here, I yearn for the beach as it empties near sunset. It’s in my DNA.

  2. Cyn
    August 18, 2010 at 1:54 pm

    This is one of the best posts I’ve read in awhile for its beautiful writing (I’ve read it three times now.) You found that human place where we are IN the moment, but yearn for it anyway. I’m glad

    • Cyn
      August 18, 2010 at 1:56 pm

      …you participated in the We Scout Wednesday today.

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