Summer Night

March 3, 2017
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I return to my bedroom for the first time that day. The room is suffocatingly warm too hot to sleep, so I open all three windows, though only one has a screen. I enter the living room, slide the first window open all the way, and carefully climb through the narrow gap. Then, I stand and walk along the gentle slope of the porch roof. The layers of black shingles are rough and cool against my bare feet. A soft summer wind dances through the long grass across the driveway and caresses my sunburned face. The wind dispenses the permeating, summer scent of fresh cut grass.


Above, the cobalt night sky envelops the land, its depths adorned with thousands of twinkling stars. My eyes sweep the sky’s vast expanse, straining to memorize the beauty of the constellations. The staring dizzies me though and I have to steady myself against the smooth, grey siding along the house.


An audible munching sound attracts my attention. It comes from the pasture, where the horses graze on the lush clover patches. I cannot see them, but imagine their impatient tail swishing and head tossing to rid themselves of mosquitoes. Beyond, where the grass is disturbed only by the breeze, the fireflies flicker and dart in a seemingly nonexistent pattern. They are fascinating, blinking intermittently, an unorganized symphony of luminescence. My eyes fight to stay open, determined to watch the display until dawn. But my brain, so adamantly against sleep this morning, is as determined now to make me rest. I glance at the fireflies below and stars above a final time. Then I quietly crawl back through the window and return to my room. By now, the breeze has cooled it to an agreeable temperature. I crawl into my bed, pull the sheets over me, rest my head against the pillow, and fall asleep.

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