May decided to bring a respite from the premature summer, and caught me by surprise. I left the windows open too late last night, and this morning the house was cold. The day never got hot, and a haze slowly thickened throughout the day and then differentiated into clouds as evening arrived. Now the clouds are a deep blue-gray, and shades of lavender and pink are fading from their margins. The waxing crescent moon is hidden behind them. The crickets have fallen silent, and only a few frogs are croaking. Tomorrow will be cooler still, and then the following day warmth will begin a gradual return. It's a pleasant change, though it will do little to ameliorate the pine pollen. Rain would be better, but there is little chance of it. Still, it's nice to know that summer has been pushed back for now. But not for long enough, I'll bet.
Lying in a Hammock at William Duffy's Farm in Pine Island, Minnesota
by James Wright
Over my head, I see the bronze butterfly, Asleep on the black trunk, Blowing like a leaf in green shadow. Down the ravine behind the empty house, The cowbells follow one another Into the distance of the afternoon. To my right, In a field of sunlight between two pines, The droppings of last year's horses Blaze up into golden stones. I lean back, as the evening darkens and comes on. A chicken hawk floats over, looking for home. I have wasted my life.