The Time Before Summer: An Exercise in 2nd Person POV


Daylight makes for new flowers and new longing. The days last longer into the night, but it is darker in the mornings, which are cold and you can’t see anything when you get into your car to go to school, because it isn’t summer yet. But they last so long that you can also sit writing (yes, on a computer) and it feels like a delicious treat to sit there doing just that in the middle of the day, even though it isn’t.

There are new flowers blooming on the trees and just poking up from the ground, and we put in the new garden a few weeks ago. Spring break has come and passed for me, but not for everyone. Spring is here, summer on its way. There are still no leaves, so it looks a little bit like winter from a distance when you look outside. The tiny shoots and leaves shiver in the cool breeze, while the whiteand pale pink flowers that are in full bloom on the trees all around my school’s campus simply collect occasional raindrops.

You can run outside again. There is pollen in the air, and there is yearning seated deep inside the ability to hit the track but not always the trails— you wish to be able to do this without the allergy medication and the headache. But you don’t care, because every day when the weather is above sixty degrees, it feels worth the clogginess to run and jump outside. You will subsist on tea and water later, to clear your head out


You see your friends every day, and you are all starting to think about summer. You have made your plans, they are making theirs, and you relish being able to see each other but you know it won’t last forever, because you will all splinter off into a hundred experiences, with trips and camps and jobs.

The festivals are open and there is a musical festival in just a week. The birds will be there as long as the weather is good. It can go into the nighttime and ice cream is socially acceptable. The time right now is delectable, and the weather is sunny enough to burn you if you aren’t careful, and also warm enough to evaporate spilled water for the first time in six months. We draw to this weather like ants to a single drop of jelly, knowing that the cool breezes and dry air present now are glorious to have, and that we can pretend it is summer without some of the discomforts.

You long for the summer but you dance under the flowers with friends. You relish the daylight and sigh at the dark mornings that still require some stress.New beginnings are anticipated eagerly, and the joy of the planning with friends almost outweighs the fun you plan to have. This time is one of life and alsoof timelessness, but it is also the time when you will feel weary and like the stopped clocks are just moving too slowly on the path to summer. Perhaps you will be graduating school and never coming back, left on your own (but not really) for the first time. Perhaps you simply are trying new things and going off on your own. But this time is the time before that, and dancing under the flowers is enough for me.



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