Sunday, September 15, 2013

365 Poems: Dammit, September

Day 258

I want to hate you.

Yea, you, September: You with your first-day-of-fall and your last-day-of-summer. All your lasts, really: Last hot-and-humid day, last day of vacation, last warm evening. Last day it's light in the morning on work days. Last month the leaves are green and where they're supposed to be. Last time I wear shorts and flipflops and sit out in the sun and feel it hot on my shoulders. Last chance to wear white.

And even worse: Last time 9/11 was just another date, or a number to call for help, last day the world felt normal.

But still. Even that day -- the memory of how beautiful that morning was, is all mixed up with the horror that the rest of the day held. Before I knew what had happened, as I walked in to work, I remember taking a deep breath and appreciating the clear sky. The perfect temperature. The still air.

God, you make it hard, September.

All the high-school football Friday night lights, so many good memories of touchdowns and half-time shows and cheering ourselves hoarse, stuff kids still do today. College-football Saturdays, the Ohio State fight song mixed up with first games at St. Francis and Notre Dame in the afternoons. Trying to drag the guys away from NFL on the TV on Sundays.

All the festivals, the street fairs, the elephant ears and corn on the cob, the kids begging to ride the frightening carnival rides, the crafts and the carnies and the air smelling like burnt sugar. Fresh apples to dip in caramel and new-pressed cider and apple dumplings. Some culinary abomination to try, like chocolate-covered bacon. The long commerical tent with a bag full of samples and pamphlets and candy. Music everywhere, country and bluegrass and folk. Maybe some cloggers providing a beat.

Bring us your firsts, September: First frost, first day of fall, first sweater day. First fallen leaves.

Last rose, last bee, last garden harvest.

Enough, okay, September. Let's declare d├ętente: Bring to us what you will, and let me love you or hate you, as needed.

Last day for this

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