Warm Weather of the Unexamined Life

Afternoon sun shafting in the window, the sidewalks as warm as summer but without insects, only the sounds of the cars and the children here in Philadelphia as the grass greens.

It makes me remember Texas in the permanent grip of summer: the drone of air conditioners, and the ticking noise they give off, the dripping and evaporating, the ants on the superhot yellow sidewalks, the quiddity of the afternoon as the sunlight becomes lateral, more tolerable and richer gold. The cool inside and the overstuffed worn furnishings, the tastes from the refrigerator, the smells in stores, the vast spaces and array, the brooding ambient Texas of it all.

What if you went somewhere where the sea could be smelled? A place of fog and grey-blue daylight? The sea would not be loud nor be seen, though you would know it would be wrinkled, and the seafowl would sound, calling though the silence. Going inside, ducking low into the dark toward dim yellow light, past thick, uneven white walls you would find a fire that cheered a room from a small recess in the wall: a comfortable chair, a convenient table, a long anticipated book, and clouds rubbing on the window panes.


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