Childhood Summer

doors creak, opened by
sun-stickied fingers.

a puddle on the sidewalk
shines with a nostalgic glimmer.

——-

the taste of pavement and chalk
so hot an egg could fry.
the oppressive warmth
needs escaping.
doors creak, opened by
sun-stickied fingers.
the air-conditioning inside
smells like fresh water
and feels like an embrace
of ice prickles
leaving bodies punctuated
with goosebumps.

a hose in the backyard
could be a source of hydration
or a toy
while running barefooted
across the grass and clover
trying not to step
on any bees–
the danger only
adding to the fun.

those days pinned down
by sea salt headaches,
leaping from
shade to shade,
erroneously convinced
the best days lay
yet ahead.

Photo by JACK REDGATE from Pexels

At Summer’s End

This year has been different.

Rays of sunshine ricochet
off an already golden lake–
a cue that summer is ending
not in ghostly whispers of warmth
but in beams of blinding lights
and the deafening hum of cicadas.

The peaches, too, signal
the seasonal close;
they have now fallen
from their trees,
littering the sidewalk with their
pointy-ended pits
and summoning a collection
of bees and wasps
that I don’t dare shoo away.

This year has been different.

I have not once needed
to wash the scent of campfire
from my hair
nor have I cruised the town
after a 9 pm sunset
with a friend in the passenger’s seat,
breathing in the dusk air of the city
side by side.

But summer will not wait
for me to experience it.
It does not care about the circumstances
that have prevented me
from taking part in these
yearly traditions.

No, summer will end
on its own time
and of its own accord,
just as it always does.


Photo by Heiner from Pexels

How was that for some summertime sadness?

My suggestion this week is one that takes me back to my childhood. When I was young, one of my favorite shows was Gullah Gullah Island, a sweet children’s series that showcased the Gullah culture of coastal regions of South Carolina and Georgia as well as the Sea Islands off those coasts. Looking back, the fact that this show so boldly and positively portrayed an African American culture of which most children likely had very little if any knowledge was huge for representation. I miss that show. I cannot think of anything similar on TV at the moment, though, of course, I could be wrong and would love to be corrected if you know of any live action children’s shows that showcase a particular culture. There are a few places to buy it online or I believe that it is still available to be streamed on Noggin if you have access to that. In any case, this DefunctTV episode about the show is very well done and brought me to nostalgic tears.

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