Though long delayed, the inevitable days of stupefaction have arrived. I cling to shade, watching the bright world from its shelter. A neighbor's lawn sprinklers send glittering arcs of water cascading onto the bushes by the driveway. When the sprinklers go off, a few drops hang like crystals from the leaf-tips, refracting the rays of the late afternoon sun, then drop one by one to vanish in the dark soil. I drowse, enervated by the heat. No breeze stirs until dusk has fallen. Then, as I look up to see the first stars appear, a single meteor passes, burning away in the heat its own velocity generates in the chilly upper air. For a moment, I imagine that it means something, but I need no omen to tell me that I have no escape from summer.