I turn the calendar page and pause.
Today, August begins.
A whisper of the end of summer is in the breeze, though the sweltering dry heat still lingers.
Nearby farmers' fields and home gardens are in harvest;
fruits and vegetables weigh down upon many kitchen counters, waiting for hot water baths and pressure canners.
In the distance, the blaze of summer fires is seen spilling over many mountains and valleys.
The evening sun turns red, and the horizon becomes a purple haze as smoke billows upward in the sky.
The laughter of children running in the yard's sprinklers quiets down as the impending uncontrollable personality of nature continues to burn closer and displace many each day.
A dear friend's funeral this past week, and his granddaughter holds a newborn baby in her arms.
I start a new day with hope, yet as I go outside to greet the day, I quickly turn back as the smoke from fires in the distance creep in silence and choke me.
As I water my small garden with a mask upon my face, little birds chirp and dance about, but soon take flight, perhaps seeking a more sure abode.
Bird, bloom, harvest, sunrise, sunset, birth, death, even my very breath reminds me that as August begins, nature is on a rampage and is not done yet.
Be kind, August.
(copyright 8/1/2018 - Alice M. Batzel - all rights reserved)
(Photo source: From the Facebook page of The REAL Linnie's Place and Don Forrester)