blue sky

Blue Sky Days: Ripeness

My sunburn has faded to an uneven shade of white-girl-in-California-tan. My neck is sore and itchy from the peeling. The tan lines are ridiculous. I won’t go outside without being smothered in sun tan lotion and wearing a hat and a light summer scarf anymore. There is a grrrl in Manhattan with the prettiest eyes that sends me sweet notes that make me glad to be alive. I suppose NYC misses me after all. The boy is looking wonderfully happy and healthy and content with life. He reads me stories, lifts weights, plays guitar like an Angel, and has taken up learning how to draw. It is good to see him devour life and experience. He is truly living and being the best he can be. It brings my heart great joy.

I have the rent sorted out for a while. My garden is exploding in green and flowers, and lush new growth. I have two peach colored roses in a vase. My African violet still won’t flower. I wonder what I am doing wrong. Outside, through my windows, the sky is a perfect clear blue. No clouds. The marine layer breeze keeps it reasonably cool. Summer never was my style. I work better in colder weather, but I love my Bay area winters. I need some rain.

The baseball is in full swing, and the Yankees are breaking my heart. It all looked so good so hopeful, then Stanton broke again, the boy is made out of bone china, and it all fell to pieces. No World Series this year. Again. Yet all is right with the world on a very superficial level, while if the surface gets scratched everything is fucked up after all. Women’s rights have been eroded to the point of danger, the world is closer to nuclear war than it has ever been, even during the Cuban Missile crisis, the weather has finally reached breaking point and yet capitalism is more important to the people that can impact such things, than saving the very planet we live on. We are eating ourselves, which is a good thing, because at this rate, famine is on it’s lean and mean way. Inflation means trips out to buy food are now getting scary rather than depressing.

Somehow nothing can seem too awful while San Francisco is in the midst of beautiful 70 degree weather and those Cali-blue skies. A bounce in the step, everything alive, everything bursting with life and hope and the lush ripeness of life is unavoidable in August in San Francisco. The curtains are moving with a breeze. The air is heavy with possibility. The street is calmer than usual. It almost feels safe. It almost feels as if the world has gone on vacation today. It almost feels as if we are not mired in sickness and death, and loss and decay. The thing with ripeness is that decay is not far around the corner. Once this blue deepens into a darker shade it cannot keep up the intensity of shade and falls into fall. The softness of perfectly ripe peaches turns green and moldy and dissolves into corruption. We are at the apex of the year. We are teetering on the edge of disaster. We are about to tip over the edge and all these blue skies, all this heat and lushness will disappear with the turning of the days.

I used to think the bloom disappeared from people when they hit 40. That plump cheeked salad days glow, replaced by an aged patina of disappointment, knowing that all you are right at that moment is all you will ever be. The arrogance of youth was wiped off my face, along with my smile as soon as I saw 45 disappear in the rear view mirror. I’m staring down the barrel of middle age about to be launched into elderly designation, watching the young people sneer, unknowing what waits for them upon their survival. I am past the ripe. Desiccating. Yet I have never been happier. I have never been more creative. I have never been more productive. I never had my shit together. I was too busy wanting to experience all of it, live all of it, fuck all of it, eat it all, consume all the bright blue skies and run towards a future with both arms open, the water pot balanced on my head, screaming ‘freedom’ out to unsuspecting ears. The body might be past the best, but my mind is ‘on right’. I can see clearly now. Unclouded.

I poured thc oil down my throat last night, not bothering to measure it out. I slept for eight hours. Dreamless. Woke up refreshed. Cleansed. The window pouring in amber light through the stain glass above my bed. I’m no longer showering at a motel, or in a spider-infested campground letting cold water clean the filth and sweat off my skin and hair. The blue sky days are not over yet. There is life left to live.


  1. clcouch123

    This is so good to read. For you, for me, for anyone. Sometimes paradox crushes, and sometimes it liberates. We can sensibly feel nuclear fear and despair over the worsening climate. (Both of which are at the hands of people who are not us.) And we can enjoy a good day for weather and for baseball (sorry about the Giants). I am encouraged. Thanks.

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