August Invocation

If summer is your season, I celebrate with you the arrival of its full flower (here in the northern hemisphere at least.) And/or I grieve with you, as your season is stolen by smoke and our collective refusal of responsibility, again.

Early summer is a wonder to me, but “traditional” summer — long hot lingering days, late July and August and part of September — I could skip entirely. I get overheated; I feel trapped inside (that’s even without the smoke); and here in the Pacific Northwest at least, I am haunted by moderately large spiders making free with my indoor living space.

A friend said recently that Cascadia’s four seasons are Mud, Fire, Spider, and Snow. I add a question mark after Snow? and concede she’s painfully on-point. My own favorite season used to be called autumn, and I love what we knew as winter, too. And spring. And early summer.

As August arrives, though, the best I can do is bless it slantwise.

August Invocation

Season of spider 
and burnt-out grass
month of incipient pears

be welcome, because
my resistance to you
is some kind of teacher, too. 

Breezeless season.
The only way out is through. 

This poem is new, not in final form I’m sure, and not part of Tell the Turning. Some version of it is undoubtedly part of the book I’m currently working on. Well, one of them. The one that’s pretty much all about difficult seasons. I promise it isn’t a downer, though. A little bit dark — that seems to be how I do. The difficult seasons, and also their hundred small joys, and making it through.

The only way out is through.

4 thoughts on “August Invocation

  1. I can relate, and so, the poem is probably even better than it might be if I’d never lived in the PNW. I see the person who commented above relates to it without living here, but still – for me, it’s so much about place and your words here – text and poem – do this place justice.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you. One of my favorite things about writing very place-specifically (as I seem to have little choice in doing) is that folks who know the place recognize it instantly — and folks who don’t often see their own experiences or places reflected anyway. Specificity is never the barrier to entry I sometimes worry it will be. Instead it seems to invite everyone in, wherever their own mind/heart/body resides.


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