As I have been successfully recovering from surgery I have had the privilege these past couple of weeks to simply sit outside for a good spell each day and enjoy the mid-summer of quiet mornings, sunlit afternoons, and the hush of a slow nightfall. Our patch of bright yellow lilies is in full bloom and adds even more radiance to the brightness of our yard. But the exuberance of the songbirds has subsided and nature in general is now taking a breather from the flurry of springtime refreshments as all that new life now settles into summertime fullness. Thankfully the pre-election punditry and “crisis du jour” of the news cycle has receded to background noise for me. It’s "summer time," and if the “livin' is (ever) easy,” as the song suggests, it is available for the taking in these long days and then into evening with the alpine glow that provides us with an extended soft entry into the night.
Like all the seasons, summertime reminds us again and again of the life cycles that define our planetary existence. Here in the northwest we have our four blended seasons without dramatic shifts in temperature or climate, but all of us across the globe are increasingly aware that our dependency on the earth’s ancient care for us is threatened by climate change. I remember well the dependency on the monsoons when I lived in India, and I am aware of the hardships of extreme weather conditions now in many parts of the world. So our experience of summertime will be adapting as well.
Some of us are traveling or hosting guests. Others are taking advantage of the weather to build and paint and rearrange our external habitats. But we all can appreciate the change of pace and the grace of the blue sky and release from our usual schedules. Our souls need the summertime rest and rehabilitation, and hopefully each of us is able to find ways to experience and enjoy its largess.
I actually consider summertime as a metaphor for an annual life recess, a break to be able to go outside and play, or to skip “school" entirely. Summertime soulfulness might also include a time for wistful reveries. All week long, for example, I have had an "ear worm” of the song from Oklahoma: “Oh what a beautiful mornin', oh what a beautiful day; I have a beautiful feeling’ everything’s goin’ my way” that has filled my heart and lightened my step all week. And I wish some of that kind of summertime assurance and hope for each of my readers as we wend our way through this wondrous life.
Blessings and peace to all,