Perhaps it's been hard to get to the blog this summer because it is the one season of the year when I cheerfully let my mind go on vacation and lean into the sensory experiences that summer so adamantly invites. It's the weather, or the orchard, or the scenery that orders my day, not my list of things to accomplish. Like a child who dashes cheerfully around the yard, seeking to still a moving butterly, I'm out to grab those things that only summer affords.
There's fresh basil, and zucchinis (next week a yummy recipe for chocolate chip zucchini cake!) and cucumbers so crisp they deserve a category all to themselves. What's ripe now? Is it blueberries or cherries or watermelon? When will the sweet corn finally arrive on the farmstands and the orchard down the road open its barn doors with bushels of sweet peaches, one large enough to share over breakfast, topped with yogurt and granola?
It's a season where distractability can be a virtue. Driving by a field of zinnias on the way to DC reminds me to grab a friend and pick a bouquet at a neighboring farm. Hot summer afternoons insist that I grab a tube and head to the Yellow Breeches to cool off on a natural "Lazy River" that includes its own small rapids. And should I mention ice cream stands?
I remind my analytical brain (closely connected to my type A self) which gets a bit put out during the summer, that it won't be long until the crisp autumn air will just as persistently encourage me to dig into the book pile that's been collecting dust since June, and get back to the blog in a "serious" way. But until then, the rest of me is enjoying thinking of nothing, accepting what is, indulging my happy tongue.
When the blackberries hang
swollen in the woods, in the brambles
nobody owns, I spend
all day among the high
my ripped arms, thinking
of nothing, cramming
the black honey of summer
into my mouth; all day my body
accepts what it is. In the dark
creeks that run by there is
this thick paw of my life darting among
the black bells, the leaves; there is
this happy tongue.
Another poem of Oliver's, The Plum Trees, can be found here on a previous