Setting Summer

the summer is far gone and yet
the late August sun still pours itself 
luxuriously across the still-green landscape,
a languid river of gold that makes
the bright sward shimmer like a jewel.
I marvel at the untempered abundance 
of such warmth and beauty and light 
while my miserly heart thinks of winter
and jealously covets the sun,
broken open like a jar of fragrant oil 
with which to bathe the feet of creation.
already the shadows are growing longer
and I long to lay aside some of this 
extravagance like grain stored up
for the short and weary days 
I know are coming even now;
I stretch out my arms and cup my hands 
as though to scoop up this treasure 
that my hands can feel but cannot hold.
the summer isn’t ours to keep or carry; 
it is only ours to enjoy the sunshine 
for however long it may be here,
and in the depths of winter to keep the faith
that summertime will come again. 

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