Solstice

summer has chased away spring
and clouds pregnant with rain jostle
each other for space
an endless sky suddenly seems too small
for everything that they hold
a touch
a sigh
a torrent
the earth is yielding
receptive
grateful
grasses grow quickly and wildly
and tree branches bow under the weight
of bulbous flowers

the sun
when it can make an appearance
bakes into your bones
sweat pools
and trickles
your skin is a few shades darker
your hair is a few shades darker
the fragility of winter behind you
you put
one
aching
foot
in front of the other
as the rain and the sun
take turns
cleansing and hardening you
a brief period of preparation
a hard-earned moment of peace

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