Summer Picnics

Drying last night’s rain
From my plastic Adirondack chair
This morning,
I recall all the web-seated aluminum lawn chairs
You would weave into new furniture
When dampness rotted the material
Over the years
And the plastic chairs you had us tip
Against the patio table so any water would run off
And you could sit down when we came outside.

We have been through a lot of lawn chairs over the years.

All that time outside:
Despite the rain.

All those picnics despite these conditions:
Drying chairs, preparing food, icing the beer and soda.
All the laughter, jokes, gossip, old stories whose endings were no surprise.

Now, as heavy clouds badger me into going back inside,
I am thinking of which books I will bring to the patio
This afternoon
And wondering how long
Until the deck will be dry if I run a towel over the boards.

Nobody will come today.
I will sit alone with so many poems and myths
And memories and two dogs who will growl at the chipmunks
Who live inside our walls and go this way and that with impunity.
We don’t mind them;
They own the place.

And the sun will come out
And I will read
And think of you

Though I will not call
Because it seems you never can hear me

Even after all this time.