these days
all it takes is a certain smell,
or sight, or sound
to remember a place
where wind chimes filled the air with silver melodies
and the green of trees pulsed with sticky heat and life.

i miss those lazy summer days,
lying on picnic tables
in the shadow of a great swelling of sound,
half-asleep, content to listen
and dream
about things that never were.

those were the days
we felt the whole world was ours—
life was just something to enjoy
while sneaking into the cafeteria for ice cream
and hosting midnight sleepovers—
because we always knew we'd be all right in the end.

and there were things that never changed
about our life in the sun
we gossiped and talked too loud
in the middle of the night
bubbles of laughter that we couldn't contain
no matter how hard we tried (or didn't).

every day we could dance in the afternoon rain
and slide in the mud once it was over
and throw things in the lake
and play tricks on the ducks
and still we'd laugh because
we knew someone would take care of it eventually.

at night there would be powwows about hot dogs
and bagels and omelettes and htp's
hearts melting in the summer heat
and puddling on the floor
and in the end we'd all agree
guys scuk—the end.

the days would crawl
but the weeks would fly
and though the shadow of august
loomed ever closer,
time stood still—
and we knew the summer would never end.

and then, of course,
there was you—
you who were at once the great sorrow
and happiness of my life.
all the little things we shared and spoke of,
and everything i learned because of you.

but any worries could be forgotten for a time
just by the mad rush of air
in our faces as we fell through the sky
and swooped back up again
laughing and singing
grown-up children on a swing-set.

we were all so young
and so very old at the same time.
we wanted so much,
because freedom was just a hill away
but still, i think, we were content in our safety
and in the rules that both comforted and annoyed.

some things never change
like the presence of a frigid witch
and some things,
like the distance of friends
and the departures of others,

but maybe if we close our eyes
we can go back in time
to a magical place
where it never rains
but it pours,
and hold it longer than forever in our memories.