As we labor to steel ourselves for many long weeks of winter, who in the Northern Hemisphere doesn’t need a little summer right about now? If you’re among the needless (heh), I grant you permission to skip this post.
The rest of us can imagine a lush, cool forest in full summer where the green flora are still bright without the sun. Let us not indulge our fondness of sunshine too much, especially in picturing an Ohio summer where clouds are apt to reign, lest we never come back from fantasy to live our real lives (whatever those are).
Five little phrases of poetry might just be enough to warm your brains for a victorious battle against seasonal affective disorder and any lingering post-holiday hangovers. First composed in 2001 during a visit to Hocking Hills State Park in south central Ohio, what follow are excerpted lines from my freshly revised poem Ode to Cantwell Cliffs:
- the greenest / moss-kissed stones I’ve seen.
- Fern’s kind of delight— / in one vale, fresh spinach, . . . lime green Jell-O or young / avocado, best seen in shade / after the rain.
- falls of fountain ale ensconce / a vast buffet
- assert themselves / in black and green tartan, / like a heady Guinness pint / wrapped in Maypole strands.
- to be, to pass, / to climb, to stir a trail of green / to my sight and sense
Now break out those light boxes, eat your spinach for iron, citrus to prevent scurvy, crank up your summery photo slide shows, and pour another cup of coffee . . . or Guinness, or a bright, sweet cocktail. Whatever it takes. After all, it’s the weekend, and the obdurate face of winter looms large.