All of a sudden, about a week ago, it started getting chilly enough in the evenings for jeans and a sweatshirt. I turned the air conditioning off and Scott dug dried paint out from the window frames with a knife so we could open them. Our neighbors smoked pork in their backyard and in ours I found a single, tiny leaf streaked with red.
It went back to being hot a few days later but it seemed wrong to close the house up again, so Seymour napped despondently on the bathroom tile and Scott puttered about the basement. I stationed myself on the couch in the airless living room with a book and a glass of water, like the captain of a ship that’s going down so slowly that he might get a chapter or two in before it’s over.
One of the things I read was this.
From Today, by Billy Collins:
If ever there were [. . .]
a day when the cool brick paths
and the garden bursting with peonies
seemed so etched in sunlight
that you felt like taking
a hammer to the glass paperweight
on the living room end table,
releasing the inhabitants
from their snow-covered cottage
so they could walk out,
holding hands and squinting
into this larger dome of blue and white,
well, today is just that kind of day.
Isn’t that lovely? The brick paths around here aren’t cool to the touch yet, but we’re getting there. In the meantime, we’ve been sopping up summer.