For Jim

Summer in Cottonwood

It's mid-July. The sky is pale from water vapor,
And it seems almost as if this burg has closed.
No cars pass by on US6, and few are parked
In front of downtown's sun-bleached stores.
Even kids avoid the sidewalks. You will find them
(If you're looking) past a clot of bicycles outside
The city swimming pool. All their elders suffer
From a sudden shortage of ambition. Clerks
Inside the drug store doze. Their supermarket
Counterparts read magazines or drum their fingers.
Farmers spend the day inside at home, where they
Just watch TV, or in The Well, where they drink
Beer and mutter as they watch TV. It wouldn't
Really change a thing, in terms of commerce
Or achievement, if somebody hung a sign
Which said, "We'll be back in the fall."

Poetry by Lawrence Beck The PoetBay support member heart!
Read 63 times
Written on 2018-07-09 at 23:32

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jim The PoetBay support member heart!
This is welcome and very much appreciated. This may be current, but it takes me back, reminds of growing up in the midwest without air conditioning, and the writing takes me back to James Agee, sitting on the front porch on a hot summer evening.

In a way I miss those days. In more ways I don't, but watching fireflies rise from the tall grass after the sun set and before bed was a sweet time—then lying in bed in a hot room. Memories of running through the sprinkler, cooling off at the lake—this brings back good thoughts. The ennui was, and is, real.

Funny, we're having the same weather, and I was thinking about the three worst jobs I've had to do in this heat and humidity. Maybe there's a poem waiting to be written.

Thank you.