(drawing by Salvador Dali)
The Summer Heat
Under the sun, the skin of sheets and underwear hung out to dry
Wrinkles and withers and dies in the defeat of fresh laundry,
And shadows play like schoolchildren.
The wind gusts, the breath of a pestering lover tickling the neck
And the humid blanket of air shrouding bare leg and back,
Sweat dripping like a night of savage love.
Patios and front porches shelter delicate flowers and anxious fiancées
From the sweltering drought of moist kisses and future finances,
And the blossoming seeds sleep in the dark soil.
And everything grows, fades, languishes, and revives with cool dusk,
Stirring in the hearts of wistful grandmothers the perpetual task,
The vigil of their younger loves and loss.
-R. R. Shea