The heat, the unimaginable heat that this country gets up, how hot it is. And yet it does not touch me so much this year. No, for I will wait to walk till it is cool, at the end of the long, lingering days. I will crouch indoors, watching the sunlight streaming down outside, met with squinting, with wilting, with the rising of shimmering air. I will watch it from inside, I will wait till it has lost its strength and the tyrant sun declines, attempting and failing to be very direct. I will wait in the dark, in the shadow, and walk in the twilight, and walk in the declining sunlight among the long shadows out of the way.
Not for me the cicada buzzing of the air conditioner, not for me its remote, refrigerator hum; only for a few moments coming from the cool of the car to the cool of the hallway and the cool of the apartment where the air conditioner is a low roar, a second insulation to the outside since it blocks out the sounds, and the sight out of the windows is that much more unreal, still and mesmerized in the glare of naked sunlight beyond the glass.
Here shadows and the distant sound of Stravinsky on the radio.
It reminds me of the long, dim cloisters of the roofed over quadrangles in the large houses of Mexico and further south. There in the cool shadows is also the sound of dripping water, of splashing; the smell of plants and wet earth, and of cooking food. The sounds of the street are remote but not muffled in the oblivion of machine noises. The sounds of birds are heard there too, in the shade, in the branches of trees out in the dusty square, in the earth interior of the town’s thick-walled church. Another heat, another life.
In this heat, in this life, I have cunningly considered the summer, and have weighed it, measured, taken stock and laid my plans. This way it will be: this much for early mornings, this much for the long evenings, after such a time another plan, retreating and furtive like the patient turtle, like the snail inside its shell, waiting to emerge. Till the pattern wears away and another one emerges, more alive.