What counts in August?
August comes in with heat and humidity. The days seem to roll by like a lazy river. Low water, little rain reminds me to be grateful that we have water.
Elderberries ripen and stain my fingers red as I pull them off thin and fragile stems before the birds eat them all. Elderberry syrup sends up a sweet vapor as I pour it into jars for winter use. Blackberries begin to ripen too. Jam making is on the schedule for next week.
Red raspberry leaves on young canes are perfect for picking and drying.
Corn, sweet corn, smothered with melted butter drips over my fingertips. Picked within the tall stalks, they click with the summer breeze and silence can be hard to hear.
Golden rod and black-eyed Susan’s leave a splash of gold on roadsides and fields. Their mustards and saffrons
provide contrast to fading purples of joe- pye weed and purple coneflower. Rose of Sharon offers branches of blooms while the garden continues to produce before fall planting. Most trees haven’t turned yet though a few are trying as they toss acorns and nuts to the ground. Leaves sway with the occasional breeze. Thunderstorms and lightning liven up the clouds as if a special effect show.
Lemonade and ice cool down a body hot from weeding. Ice cream melts quickly and becomes a reward saved for sunset. Fireflies dance at the tree line bringing glitter to the night’s stage. Dragonflies flit over mown sweet grasses. Bats come out, one or two, carrying the burden of night time patrols, their numbers dwindling. The moon rises as graceful as a slow waltz while stars create a backdrop on a clear and darkened sky.
What counts in August are the sounds of summer. Somehow I hear the greens of forest and field deepen. I hear a change in the song summer sings as if a pause, a riff, a sharp that moves into a flat; a reminder that the wheel of the seasons turns no matter if I watch or listen, no matter how I hear. August reminds me of summer’s heat before the snow flies. The sun beats steady on cloudless days causing field and flower to go within. What counts in august are these times, the heat and humidity, the buzz and the harvest, the bounty and the savoring of sunlight, the first hint of autumn and coolness found within the forest.
My thoughts meander today as august nearly ends. Enjoy summer’s bounty and beauty.