Friday, July 29, 2011

Burn

Swings hang silent and alone as we pass, even the breeze they offer not enough to entice. Remnants, once grass, sigh as we grind their brittle bodies into the ground, happy to finally have excuse to lay flat. Our sweat does little for the remainders, who thirstily catch each droplet. Salt burns their throats, yet they drink. The sun continues to smile, oblivious to what it does to us.

Step. Step. Step. Hope for relief keeps our feet moving as we cross the field from the parking lot to an oasis of concrete. Pipes rise from its face, tall stiff metal trees that gush waterfalls and spray showers. Kids of all colors, clad in vibrant suits and bare feet, run beneath. Between their cheeks, they are all teeth. Their gleeful cries worship the wet.

Adults rest on blankets beneath a lone tree. Limbs and leaves stretch to provide as much shadow as possible. Some talk, some just lay flat, their kids a mirage in the melting addled minds. Black birds watch, waiting for those that don't get back up.

A trail begins. Clothes, towels, shoes, everything unnecessary, down to our suits, in effort to reach and as our toes kiss the skim of cool water on its way to the drain our strength is renewed. The kids care less that we are feet taller and the only ones, they scamper from one sprayer to the next and wait for water to dump from overhead buckets.

When you hesitate, I take you in my arms and push us beneath the waterfall, which thunders against already pink skin, pasting hair flat to our heads, it massages our shoulders with firm fingers.  We laugh in delight as if we were eight. When our wet lips meet, I no longer feel the sun's heat, though I know it still burns.

Rome may be ash by the end, but I refuse to let go of this moment.

57 comments:

DJan said...

Summer, pure and simple. Hot. Love the image of the grins on those kids' faces. And this is hot in many different ways, very hot.

Josh Hoyt said...

Ahhh I was so sure I would be first for once. That is quite an accomplishment when you get 50 or so posts :) Anyways great job I love watching the kids in water. They love it so much and have such great big smiles while they are doing it.

Eva Gallant said...

Love the images....the blackbirds waiting for those who don't get up ...

Pat Hatt said...

Yeah just the joy water can bring
One simple little thing
As always set the scene well
Guess you didn't chuck your pen straight to hell..LOL
Yes oh so hot
And another month of it we will supposedly get whether we like it or not

CM said...

Very visual. Excellent. And yay for your young spirit! My hubby hates water, so getting him to go to a water park is nearly impossible. But my boys love it, especially the giant bucket, so he goes as a silent objector!

lori said...

That last line is perfection. There is nothing like summer fun with the one you love. Nothing. We had a similar experience last summer at a splash park where we were the only adults splashing, but who cares? Life is too short to watch from the sidelines, and you're right that the kids could care less.

And, it always helps me to read your present tense. Still working out some kinks with that :)

Heaven said...

Sweet summer and fun. I love it,specially the last few lines ~

We are going to get a taste of it this weekend ~ should be fun ~

sharplittlepencil said...

Brian, lovely interpretation of grass, of heat, of that exquisite burn of love that even the waterfall cannot quench! Perfect. Thanks for visiting me, and I'll be back! Amy
http://sharplittlepencil.wordpress.com/2011/07/29/yeah-like-thats-gonna-happen/

hedgewitch said...

Hold on to the moment, and each other, indeed. That bit about the grass was so vivid, brian--felt it just this afternoon, grass so crisp it actually crackles underfoot. I love that bucket thing--played under it myself before, and I'm way too old. So they say.

Steve E said...

The summer sun, the wet, and Thou..

Enchanted Oak said...

Love keeps us young.
Very nice, sensory work.

kaykuala said...

The heat of summer and kids frolicking in the water. Wonderful, life meant to be shared. Great!

Lorraine said...

Oh Brian,...sometimes, often - mostly you just take my breath away

Valerie said...

This was almost pictorial, Brian. The only hiccup for me was this:

'Black birds watch, waiting for those that don't get back up'

Ooooooer!

adeeyoyo said...

Your descritions: Between their cheeks, they are all teeth... mirage in the melting addled minds... Brilliant, Brian!

Mrsupole said...

Some heat you want to go away, while another heat, one wants to last forever.

God bless.

Bonnie said...

Such a vivid portrayal - I could feel the heat and the cool spray of water. Love how you savor every moment with your loved ones Brian. How they will treasure your words when they are older!

thoughtsofapatcheduptraveler said...

Vivid, inviting, welcome and purely intimate in the most perfect way.

Beth

TechnoBabe said...

This is so fun. Makes me want to find some water for hubby and me to run into and kiss. Yeah. What a picture that would make. You two must be a good example to all who encounter you.

the walking man said...

.You take the water brian, I will take the hot coffee but not on the skin.

Me said...

Gorgeous prose. I look forward to holding a book with your name on it one day.

otin said...

sounds like a day at the water park?

Pat said...

Ah, the cool relief of water splashing on a hot body! I can feel it now!

Heather said...

this sounds like summer in the city! my fav park in NYC has a water park with buckets....haven't gotten dunked yet, :) - I like this one - 90s today!

Pauline said...

There are numerous great lines in this (the waiting blackbirds, the grass looking for an excuse to lay flat), but my favorite is this: "Between their cheeks, they are all teeth." What a perfect description of a smile (and what my face looks like right now)!

Brian Miller said...

otin, it is actually called a spray ground...if you google it you can see one...it is at the city park and is free...they built it last year....it runs from 11 AM - 8 PM through the summer...sweet relief on hot days...its about 60 feet in diameter...has about 8-9 stations where you can get wet...really cool place...

David Allen Waters said...

ah summer fun...you brought it to us, made us feel like we were there joining in..,.,brilliant :)

Fireblossom said...

Hang on to it and cherish it, friend.

Daniel said...

Wow, this was a very visual piece. You took me there and I understood and smiles (and then averted my gaze). Great work!

oceangirl said...

reminds me of the carowinds in charlotte. wonderful.

Syd said...

Hot here too. Water is the only way to chill. Swim call, dude.

kaykuala said...

The joys of frolicking in water to be young again. A sure fire balance to the summer heat

Tara Miller said...

Your writing talent is just amazing, love. I had fun as well when you carried me into the ICE COLD waterfall....fun to be kids with the one you love!!! ;)

ellen abbott said...

Hi Brian. I trail you through blogland always amazed that you are everywhere before me. I slip in and out of your place unnoticed. Today I thought I would make my visit known.

Stranger said...

We have these sprinkler in all the parks here running from Memorial Day to Labor Day - they are so fun!
This is quite a steamy piece.

happygirl said...

The joy of cool water in the hot summer. :)

Christine said...

Our family Summer moments helps us makes it through cold Canadian winters, I love this.

Mama Zen said...

Just beautiful.

ed pilolla said...

i love summer moments. this is bright and warm and refreshing in the end:)

ladyfi said...

Great post!

annell said...

Precious moment! I remember it all!

Fred said...

Really appropriate time of the year for this piece. Nice prose, nice feeling from reading it, kind of one of those where you feel a bit cooler inside from reading. Nice write

sm said...

Step. Step. Step. Hope for relief keeps our feet moving
beautifully written

Ruthiey said...

ah, great fun! Gotta watch out for that heat. :)

KLo said...

I know I say this every time I leave a comment, but ... wow!

Are you intentional with your writing? Do you say to yourself, "You know, I'll stick in some alliteration here to call forth images of water noise and the singsong call of children", or does it just happen?

It just totally made me cry ...

Claudia said...

just playing catch up... sigh... and thought i'd tell you... wherever this ended... Rome is still standing... smiles

scottandwords said...

You're too in love (chuckle). Yeah, you didn't tell me, you showed me (laugh). I love watching kids acting out of pure enjoyment...kids like you. It's great to read about how you have seemed to hold onto that (or maybe it's just in your writing?). Good read regardless!

haikulovesongs said...

a breathtaking ending!

Magpie said...

"When our wet lips meet, I no longer feel the sun's heat, though I know it still burns."...I'm thinking there was another fire beginning to burn. :)

kkrige said...

I cannot help but jump in there myself. I went to the African Lion Safari a few weeks ago with my sister & her brood, & both her and I were as soaked as the kids. Best way to beat the heat and the kids love it even when when they see your smiling faces. I bet the missus had a pretty big smile on her face too. :)

SueAnn said...

And a beautiful moment it is!! We just took our grandkids to a water park...I personally experienced the water dump on my head. It was thrilling and refreshing!!
Hugs
SueAnn

Betty said...

A spray ground. How fabulous. Your words are fabulous too. :)

Sue said...

Summer, water, and someone you love: MAGIC!

=)

Hilary said...

A beautiful ode to my favourite season.

tracy said...

I surely hope you are making a little money off your writing, Brian. You should. I feel almost guilty not paying for it!

Who Is Afraid Of Miss Lovett? No, Mrs.Lovett... said...

"Pipes rise from its face, tall stiff metal trees that gush waterfalls and spray showers. Kids of all colors, clad in vibrant suits and bare feet, run beneath. Between their cheeks, they are all teeth. Their gleeful cries worship the wet..."

Hi! Brian...
Once again, what a very vivid description Of a hot summer day and what measure that are taken to cool Off...Thanks, for sharing!
deedee ;-D

Goofball said...

bothered by the heat wave??