August 6, 2017
you have but slumbered here while these visions did appear 1
In northern Europe, it is better know as St John’s Day and celebrations accompany both the solstice and the feast-day.
That may be the formal definition of midsummer, but I want to use the term more literally to mean the half-way point of the season – mid-way between June 21 and September 21. That would make today the middle of summer.
Where spring is renewal and re-birth, summer is lazy days and vacations. It’s the season for picnics, fireworks, baseball, for sun-bathing. It’s the season when economies slow down, when highways are filled with campers, when cities are abandoned and the country-side and the beach are teeming; it’s the time when schools are shuttered, repainted and cleaned. In Calabria, it’s the dry season when rivers become rivulets and streams turn into stagnant pools. In Northern Ontario it’s the season of endless daylight.
Summer is temporal, fleeting. It’s a time to experiment, explore, to dabble; it’s the season of no-strings, no commitments.
– 1967 was the summer of love, the summer of the Detroit riots
– 1968 was the summer I left Canada for Narragansett
– 1972 was the summer I went back to Italy for the first time
1 William Shakespeare: A Midsummer Night’s Dream – Act V, Scene I
2 The pic is of from the second-floor deck – looking through the slats to the waning light.