solstice again

I slept through the shortest night of the year. Falling into bed after 11, there was still discernable light in the western sky. And when I first woke before 5 everything was already visible in a pink pre-dawn haze. While I slept, the tide had turned; summer officially began with its diminishing days. It was a little bitter, as is every sweet beginning that must eventually have an end. But there were months to inhale and memorize light, to preserve it for later. Perhaps for the longest night of the year when darkness and heavy skies, with out my really having noticed, have wrapped themselves around my shoulders and I have burrowed in. Then I might remember sunlight flirting from around a poof of bright white cloud, a canola field blooming brilliantly back at the sky, the cheerful scourge of dandelions in the lawn. I’d take theses things from their storage place, carefully peeling back protective layers of packaging, and reach into the preserved light of summer, releasing smells of cut grass, warm sage, and line-dried sheets. Snug in the dark of winter, I might link the longest night to its counterpoint, the longest day with the sweetness of reclaiming as each day lengthens.