I am lying in a field of grass. No shoes, no clouds, just sun. Down south with my sister away from the rain and the muck. For two days I am dry and warm.
In an instant I’m ten again, lying in a field at my aunt’s house in Brookfield, CT. I’m sixteen at Tarrywile Park in Danbury, sun beaming down on my face. Seventeen just off the stage at the outdoor theatre of Richter Park, blanket stretched out for a picnic dinner, shoes in a pile to the side.
I am nineteen years old sprawled out in the middle of Boston Common on a day off from classes and work. Now I’m twenty in Boston Garden and twenty-two at Arnold Arboretum in Jamaica Plain, lying in a field of grass, sun filling the sky as well as my heart. Three years later I’m down on the esplanade by the Charles River daydreaming of my big move to New York City.
At twenty-five I lay in the fields of Prospect Park in Brooklyn. Now Central Park, Manhattan for a minute and quickly back to Brooklyn. At thirty I lay in the fields where the kite flyers play. I lay by the lake and over near the baseball diamonds.
Now I’m thirty-one and heading northwest towards the rains. I plan to go to California but end up in Oregon.
I haven’t laid down in a field of grass since moving to Portland. The sun has rarely shone on my face. In this moment in Lithia Park at thirty-three I am sucking up as much joy as I possibly can from it, attempting to store it away for the weeks to come. Tomorrow I will drive back north to endure three more months of dark grey.
Ode to the grass and the summer and the sun, it is more than official: I love thee!