At Summer’s End

This year has been different.

Rays of sunshine ricochet
off an already golden lake–
a cue that summer is ending
not in ghostly whispers of warmth
but in beams of blinding lights
and the deafening hum of cicadas.

The peaches, too, signal
the seasonal close;
they have now fallen
from their trees,
littering the sidewalk with their
pointy-ended pits
and summoning a collection
of bees and wasps
that I don’t dare shoo away.

This year has been different.

I have not once needed
to wash the scent of campfire
from my hair
nor have I cruised the town
after a 9 pm sunset
with a friend in the passenger’s seat,
breathing in the dusk air of the city
side by side.

But summer will not wait
for me to experience it.
It does not care about the circumstances
that have prevented me
from taking part in these
yearly traditions.

No, summer will end
on its own time
and of its own accord,
just as it always does.

Photo by Heiner from Pexels

How was that for some summertime sadness?

My suggestion this week is one that takes me back to my childhood. When I was young, one of my favorite shows was Gullah Gullah Island, a sweet children’s series that showcased the Gullah culture of coastal regions of South Carolina and Georgia as well as the Sea Islands off those coasts. Looking back, the fact that this show so boldly and positively portrayed an African American culture of which most children likely had very little if any knowledge was huge for representation. I miss that show. I cannot think of anything similar on TV at the moment, though, of course, I could be wrong and would love to be corrected if you know of any live action children’s shows that showcase a particular culture. There are a few places to buy it online or I believe that it is still available to be streamed on Noggin if you have access to that. In any case, this DefunctTV episode about the show is very well done and brought me to nostalgic tears.


The Garden (A Collaborative Poem)

The rain keeps the garden flourishing till forever and ever!

Come to the garden, the heart of living souls.
The trees provide their oxygen for thine lungs,
And the flowers make thy nose feel so blessed,
And the sky smiles at the clouds for preparing water.
Oh, thou must look up, and embrace the joy of coming-
The rain keeps the garden flourishing till forever and ever!

But if the rain stops flowing
And the sweet scent of petal-tinged petrichor dissipates,
That is when thou must take matters into thine hands
To ensure the continued thriving
Of those flowers–
Of those trees–
That give the oxygen to fill thy lungs
And beauty to fill thy eyes.
Thou know then what thou must do.

Water them, oh, thou’ll go and fetch 
A bucket of water–
And while I am in the garden,
Thou come back and pour water out on me
From the bucket that thou carry.  

Water the flowers,
Water the trees,
Water thyself,
And water me
And altogether the garden will be
Once again a sanctuary.

For the garden will return
To the time where was all beginning.
Oh, bless the time that dwells for no one
But for the sanctuary.

Photo by Zane Lee on Unsplash

This was another collaborative poem with my dear friend Ismael Mansoor from This Engrained Heart. His stanzas are in italics. Go check out his blog!

Our other collaborations:

If you are interested in collaborating with me, you can reach out via my contact page, and I will get back to you as soon as I can.

Hygge (A collaborative poem)

Hygge is not complacency–
It is instead a steady, thrumming heartbeat

Dear everyone, Joy and I wrote this fourth collaborative poem called Hygge. Her writing is in italic and mine is bold.

Hygge tell thee, how is thine comfort zone
Hygge is a personification but a word of name
He tells thee, my comfort zone is empty
For I travel out of it, and never return to it
I am

Hygge (A collaborative poem)

Go check out this collaboration between me and Ismael Mansoor of This Engrained Heart!

Your Words Have Meaning, Dear

Sometimes, such words warrant war

Syllables spill from ludicrous lips
as vowels litter the terra firma
and consonants are crushed
by a careless creator.
These phrases that thoughtlessly tumble
from mind to mouth to ground
contain cruelties
that the unthinking speaker
never even knew.

Sometimes, such words warrant war;
other times, they solicit sadness.
In any case, this vapid verbiage
can hurt hearts,
slice open souls,
and render ribs to wretched weeping.
Unintentional though it may be,
these unmeaning messages
still hold sway
over the ears and hearts
that hear them.

The next time that a thoughtless thought
threatens to leave your lips,
remember, friend,
with language, kindness is king,
so before opening your mouth to say anything,
please know that your words have meaning.

Photo by Mikechie Esparagoza from Pexels

This week, I would simply like to offer the suggestion to check out two of my favorite poets who I follow on Instagram. The first is M. G. Hughes who writes simple yet elegant poems, usually touching on nature or other aesthetic observations she has made. The second poet is Boomie Bol who I just realized (and I feel silly for not checking until writing this) also has a WordPress blog where she posts her gorgeous poems about her experiences. I hope that you will take the time to check out both of their works because they have been so inspiring to me!