Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Recalling summer

Alice sent me this wonderful poem about summer:

Mint

I am chopping up the last mint of summer.
It’s a ritual goodbye –
goes with sandals, bare legs, shorts and suntan lotion,
alfresco dinners and the candles burning
to a waxen stump
among the garden leaves.
Last mint on my fingers now,
the scent of it pushed through my hair
when I lift my hand
from a finishing touch to dinner.
Last ritual in a ritual,
and everything I’ve ever learned
seems to return
to the comfort and confines of cycles such as these –
how I am balanced on the last, sharp edges
of this pepper scent which I want to be everywhere,
holding it close
with every intensity I shall ever have,
and how I forget it, in the snow-filled silence
of my three-month-hence garden,
so I wonder to myself
Did I ever eat mint? Did I ever crush it on the circle
of this wide blue plate? Did I ever crave a summer,
long and green and full of this?
The mystery is
what we do with loves even as small as this –
how we learn to live with them,
how we learn to forget.

(R Seatter)

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