I snapped sugar peas from their vines in the twilight of the evening, in the tail end of summer. If we could have one night of peace, let this be it.
This afternoon smelled like 63 degrees: something about the sun baking the roadweeds and the spruce trees, and the quiet drone of late summer insects following the last plumes of pollen. Down my street, men race unmuffled motors as another elegy to the changing season: summer, when you and I were both once young. Now comes the moody, menacing fall.
My friend Jerry is busy digging graves in Fairbanks and I think about poor Yorick and the things that used to make me laugh. Soon it will be years since I’ve felt that lightness, but the calendar will push again in 9 months, an ever-warming march forward and a reckoning, again, with joy.
Jessica Cherry, PhD, is a scientist, writer, and commercial airplane pilot living in Anchorage and Fairbanks.