Poor Will's Almanack: August 30 – September 5, 2011

Aug 30, 2011

Poor Will’s Almanack for the fourth week of Late Summer

After a cool wave came through my yard last night, I walked outside into the breeze, and I suddenly became aware of the disconcerting power of Late Summer. I was disoriented and restless, filled with a sentimental confusion of sadness and excitement.

The morning wind was telling me stories, this cool wave predicting transformations, the unavoidable coming of fall, the inner changes I will undergo, the exterior, dramatic alterations destined in the trees and…my life.

The wind uncovered premonitions and retrospectives, fed them at the same time, nurturing an almost wild, bittersweet death wish, anticipation of the winter’s cocoon, anguish at the loss of the summer, but longing, too, for the transformations to come.

As the day went on, I became full of a maudlin tenderness for the creatures around me. I brushed away the mosquitoes that landed on me, careful not to hurt them. A friend invited me to go fishing; I brought home three good-size catfish, but I didn’t have the heart to kill and cook them, carried them in my cooler to the river near my house and put them gently in the water, apologized to them and watched in relief as they swam away into the current.

Then I found a bumblebee motionless on its side in the middle of a red zinnia. Afraid he was dead, I shook the flower, but nothing happened. So I stroked his wings, and as if miraculously he recovered, got up clumsily and buzzed away. Tears welled in my eyes when I saw he had only been sleeping in the sun, exhausted, or drugged with nectar, collapsed in this bright, benign bed, indifferent to enemies and duty.

Next week on Poor Will’s Almanack: notes for the fifth week of Late Summer. In the meantime, watch out for those Late Summer emotions