Summer’s just opening up, it seems, but then
the rowans catch me with their sudden flame
of July-auburn berries ripening when
most unexpected. Every year the same.
It’s skinny straps and shorts out on the street,
and timeless sun-flushed bodies in the frame
of open windows, wide against the heat
and melting tar catching at sandal heels
while traffic jams of cars repeat the beat
and throb of reggae. Every summer feels
like this, stretching and yawning, young and gold
and going on for ever. Summer steals
the tick-tock time that marks us out as old
and slows it to a crawl, to lazy days
idling past splashing fountains for their cold
immediate sparkling instance, for the ways
the trees are richly green, and rivers run
muscular and urgent to their estuaries;
but then the rowans’ autumn-red. The sun
is suddenly confronted; summer’s done.
D. A. Prince
If you have any comments on this poem, D. A. Prince would be pleased
to hear from you.