Photo by Salt Water New England

Wednesday, August 12, 2020

The Moment Between When Summer Feels Endless and When Summer Feels Over

Photos by Salt Water New England










Sent by a friend, wishing it were June:

Summer Kitchen
Donald Hall, Poet Laureate

In June's high light she stood at the sink
            With a glass of wine,
And listened for the bobolink,
And crushed garlic in late sunshine.

I watched her cooking, from my chair.
            She pressed her lips
Together, reached for kitchenware,
And tasted sauce from her fingertips.

"It's ready now. Come on," she said.
            "You light the candle."
We ate, and talked, and went to bed,
And slept. It was a miracle.

41 comments:

  1. Wonderful, as always. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete
  2. My birthday is in early August and I always get the feeling, after it, that we're on a very rapid journey into Autumn. The light fades quicker on an evening, the majority of the garden flowers have gone or are going to seed, and the shops are full of 'back to school' promotions. An old Yorkshire word describes it perfectly. Backendish.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Photo #5: the steep dip of those rocks says Pemaquid Point to me.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Maine coast, gorgeous. Good call on Pemaquid Point, though i'm drawing that conclusion from the lighthouse.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. More on those rocks —

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FUfzYwfOnTo

      Delete
  5. Perfect post. Bittersweet and nostalgic time of the year. Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Superb as ever! Thank you so very much, for what you do for us! Cheers!

    ReplyDelete
  7. Wasn’t it Yogi who said, “It ain’t over til it’s over” ?

    ReplyDelete
  8. I never feel that summer seems endless, not at this latitude, but maybe that is just me.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I'm as tired of summer as my garden is.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Exactly! The shift is at once imperceptible yet distinct. I ask myself every August, "When did this happen?" The cooler, dewier mornings and evenings and the heaviness in the blooms all hinting at the approaching seasonal shift.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I've noticed a change in light, but not in heat. Summer feels endless and I am longing for sweater weather, crisp leaves and cooler evenings to I can sleep with the window open. In the meantime, I will live vicariously through SWNE.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wishing time away is very bad juju!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Ooh! Ah! Lovely! Summer is a state of mind.

    ReplyDelete
  14. The sprinkler twirls.
    The summer wanes.
    The pavement wears
    Popsicle stains.

    The playground grass
    Is worn to dust.
    The weary swings
    Creak, creak with rust.

    The trees are bored
    With being green.
    Some people leave
    The local scene

    And go to seaside
    Bungalows
    And take off nearly
    All their clothes.

    -John Updike

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. This is terrific! Thanks for sharing.

      Delete
    2. Many birds here in St. Clair County, Michigan started migrating end of July. Four birders in different rural townships noticed the change.

      Delete
    3. Ahhhh....what John Cheever was able to do with words...

      Delete
  15. Time seems to stand still when your in the middle of your beach vacation but summer seems over when you close up the cottage and start home. And it really seems over when you cross the bridge to the mainland, even if you have 200 miles to go. Ah, but the cottage was sold and you retired and vacations just aren't the same.

    And by the way, I think the Renault is a first here. I think it's an R4.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes! I did a double take when I saw that photo, haha! I'm a happy Virginia resident but from London originally, and I do get nostalgic remembering those old Renaults, Citroens, Volvos and Saabs (I'll take those Swedish cars over the French ones but they all had such character!).

      Delete
    2. To think I passed up the chance to rent a Škoda! I'm also a (Northern) Virginia resident and usually happy.

      Delete
    3. My mother, who emigrated to Canada from Poland in 1960, laughingly refers to the Czech automobile (now owned by VW) as a "Szkoda", which roughly translates to 'a pity'. We both smile when it comes up in conversation...

      Your intrepid reader from north of the 49th parallel,

      Banacek

      Delete
    4. Lada, Lada, Lada!

      I've owned three Renaults but they quit importing Peugeots before I could buy one. I wanted a 304 because Julia Child had one--I think.

      Delete
    5. I'm trying to remember any of the Lada jokes from high school!

      Delete
    6. and taking that left turn off Highway 6 from Hatteras island to the mainland with its sudden traffic and buildings is a rude shock to the system!

      Delete
    7. The Renault may have been a so-so car, but at least it wasn't a Trabi.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Trabant

      Q. How do you double the value of a Trabant?
      A. Fill up the tank!

      Q. How many workers does it take to build a Trabi?
      A. Three: one to cut, one to fold, and one to paste.

      Q. How do you measure the acceleration of a Trabant?
      A. With a diary.

      Q. What's the difference between a Jehovah's Witness and a Trabant?
      A. You can shut the door on a Jehovah's Witness.

      Q. When does a Trabi reach its top speed?
      A. When it's being towed.

      Q. How do you catch a Trabi?
      A. Just stick chewing gum on the highway.

      Q. Why do some Trabants have heated rear windows?
      A. To keep your hands warm when pushing.

      Delete
    8. Ah, Lada -- the Togliatti terror; you know, it wasn't just Fords that you could hear rusting on summer evenings in the 70s... And if Ms. Child drove a Peugeot, it was less likely for its Gallic quirkiness than for its ability to (quickly) blend into its European environment...

      B.

      Delete
  16. We still have about 8 weeks of summer here in NE Georgia. The light certainly has changed and daylight hours are fewer. The heat persists, however morning lows are about to begin dipping into the 60s again. That makes me smile. The heat weary flowers may even bounce back a bit!! Prost!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Amen! It's 94 degrees here in NE Georgia right now! When will summer finally be over?!

      Delete
  17. Wonderful photos as usual, and Susan I can relate being from the Carolinas!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Sure looks like the Pemaquid Light House .

    ReplyDelete
  19. Thank you for the Donald Hall poem! I love his writing. I have often thought the photos on this blog would perfectly illustrate many of his poems and essays.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Love the old Odd Fellows Hall. Not many of those around anymore!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Peak summer. It's zenith. The days are getting shorter, but they are so glorious we barely notice. WHAT long pants? WHAT socks? Did we really wear those? What is that tweed thing peeking from the corner of the closet? Go to the garden and pick something for dinner. Surely, it will never end.

    ReplyDelete
  22. The poet Virgil puts it beautifully in the Georgics: Optimus quisque dies miseris mortalibus aevi primus fugit "each best day of a man's life is the first to disappear". It captures the bittersweetness of life. I read this in my teens. I understand it in my sixties.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Since the global warming phenomenon really got rolling, say thirty years ago, we could look forward to a front in mid-October to usher in noticeably cooler weather in Central Texas, but the meteorological records show that it has hit 90 in every month of the year and 100 in six of them. The most radical swing I recall is freezing and sleeting one day followed by 99 in February. So I have no idea when summer is over in Austin! That said, I wish it were. Yesterday was 103, today is 106, and tomorrow is 107. Yikes! But I draw my changing season clues from things other than the actual weather. The cedar elms are shedding leaves like crazy. Hatch chiles are showing up in the grocery store. Sportscasters are talking incessantly about football. Yes, the light has changed, but it is barely discernible.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Tim: I'm in East Texas near the Louisiana border on I-20 and I can relate. He advisory's all weekend. I think the reason we love football in Texas is that, subconsciously at least, it signals the end of summer.

      Delete
  24. “To say it was a beautiful day would not begin to explain it. It was that day when the end of summer intersects perfectly with the start of fall.”

    – Ann Patchett

    ReplyDelete
  25. As an adult, I've always found that by late July, I begin thinking ahead to the fall semester, not always with enthusiasm, which usually commences just before the end of August. Somewhat amazingly, this year at MSU, classes don't start until September 2nd. Still, it's all very uncivilized kicking off the term before the Labor Day weekend. When I was a child and teenager, summers seemed to go on forever until suddenly it was time to go back to school, which was always a happy time as much as I hated to see summer end.

    Best Regards,

    Heinz-Ulrich

    ReplyDelete
  26. As others have suggested, there is the time between when you are no longer looking forward to summer and when you start looking forward to autumn.

    ReplyDelete
  27. More beautiful, serene pictures. Thank you!

    ReplyDelete