July 21, 2007

Simply the Best

More Hall o’ Fame weather today, freakishly good weather. We’re not worthy. Technically we’re in what’s called a “moderate drought”, weatherese for “you’ve had a freakishly good weather lately haven't you?”. Sure I’ll be willing to pay a few extra pennies for vegetables at the market – in the unlikely event I should start eating vegetables.

Saul Bellow wrote in Ravelstein,
“The gloss the sun puts on the surroundings – the triumph of life, so to speak, the flourishing of everything makes me despair. I’ll never be able to keep up with all the massed hours of life triumphant.”
Best answer I have for Saul, who is hopefully now in the Church Triumphant, is from yesterday's responsorial Psalm:
“How shall I make a return to the LORD for all the good he has done for me? The cup of salvation I will take up, and I will call upon the name of the LORD.”
Cup, even with its dualistic meanings.

July, she passes so quickly. I keep her heirlooms on the wall, souvenirs called ‘calendars’, posted at various places at home and office so as to remember her by, to cherish her even in her fleetingness.

She volleys with fair maiden June for most beautiful of the twelve and though opinions vary widely, July, being the latter month, is honored for holding the forces of cruel Autumn at bay. June has nothing to fear in July but July does August with its back-to-schoolness, and under July’s veil the fireflies still light, leaves do not fall, and goldfinches glitter. The sun holds fort over us, camped at long intervals like McClellan’s army in the early years of the war. There is the consolation of stability, of safety.

Even on work days her long fingers extend into the night, making strong the eight pm light. She crystals through trees, past bushes, and finds her way even into the soil, which mirrors her softness and warmness when touched.

July holds no quarter to June in length of days or fulsomeness of sun. She is full of picnics and ice cream and fireworks and canoe rides and Shakespearian plays in the park. July is the home of the All-Star game, the fat part of the plate, of tomato plants so voluminous and green that they burst their cages just before delivering newly ripened fruit. She promises bike rides festooned with old songs, sunsets heroic with color, lunches made special by the setting. July has only four letters so as to prevent us from taking up time to pronounce her name: she would rather we be outside enjoying her.

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