August is usually hot and dry, but this year July was too, and June. Wildfires and water shortages, rivers so low the fish are dying, this summer has been a national emergency. I posted this earlier today, but August doesn’t mean anything else this year, so I’m adding it to the dverse ‘August’ prompt.
I picked blackberries again,
all that seems to flourish
in this wasted summer,
and beneath my feet,
the ashes of clover and vetch,
yellow dust rising
that should bind deep,
damp and sweet,
growing green roots and shoots.
36 thoughts on “Drought”
How are the blackberries?
Not many ripe yet. I thought there’d be more today, but there are going to be masses of them.
I hope you get to enjoy them!
We will. They take care of desserts for the rest of the year. I’m not a dessert person. Enthusiasm for preparing family meals runs out before the dessert stage 🙂
Blackberries are delicious all by themselves.
They are. Except for the seeds!
Oh well–can’t have everything! 😏
mmmm…..do you make blackberry jam? I used to love my gardening and canning days when we lived in Iowa many many years ago! 🙂 I recall always having a LARGE zuchinni crop, no matter how few seeds I planted and then filling the freezer with loaves of zuchinni bread to savor all through the winter. Ah….you’re bringing back the memories 🙂
But — on a much more somber note…..the drought, the wild fires, calamitous. And as California and parts of the country are parched, Kentucky is flooded. The juxtapositioning is …. well, I don’t even know the words to describe it!
No, I don’t make jam. I probably eat about half a jar of jam a year and husband never touches it, so it would be a lot of work for nothing. I just stew them and mix them with apple to put in tarts, crumbles or just to eat with ice cream.
I can picture “the ashes of clover and vetch, yellow dust rising,” sigh .. 😦 it is so heartbreaking. Thank you so much for adding your voice to the prompt, Jane.
The trees are dying and even insects. Heartbreaking and frightening.
Sadly this what it looks like in some parts of the field. Not much water. I love the hopeful end, green roots and shoots.
That’s a crack in our north meadow. It’s fissured everywhere this year and tinder-dry. I hope there are some green shoots left, though I don’t see any.
I loved the images used. I like that you’ve captured the spirit of August not meaning anything else this year except dry weather and heat.
We’ve even had fires here! – hard to imagine right now, as it’s pouring out there. I love this poem, Jane, it says so much so delicately.
Thank you 🙂 It’s gone on so long now it’s exhausting. This is the third heat wave this summer, expecting 40° again today and not a drop of rain since I don’t know when.
You’ve captured the dry hedges so well.
Everything’s dry. The elms are already fragile and the poplars shed when they’re thirsty, but I’ve never known dogwood and wild plum wilt.
We planted a community orchard this spring and are struggling to keep the trees alive.
The apple trees we planted four years ago are suffering, one is wilting badly but the one we planted this spring is more or less dead.
Our six trees are hanging on….
Too far from the house to carry water over to them. The vines look terrible too.
It’s the same here in the States. It’s bad enough when the heat is oppressive, but the drought that is accompanying it has been devastating.
Yet ask people to shower less often, don’t water lawns, wash cars, fill swimming pools, and they look at you as if you’ve suggested they kill their first born child.
By August things are dying back and cooking in the hot summer sun. You poem shares this very well.
Thanks Dwight. Everything died back in July. Now it’s just going to dust.
The photo is of a patch of meadow. The entire piece of land is like that, broken up by crevasses so you can’t walk across what used to be wild flower meadows without twisting your ankle. Parched and cracking open.
So heartbreaking, Jane.
If we knew it was an exception it wouldn’t be so bad, but we all know that this is the new norm.
Sigh…so it is.
I felt a foreboding when reading your poem. It isn’t about occasional drought anymore, but so much more to come and so much less to harvest.
I feel it every day. It’s gone on so long this year and no end in sight yet. A steady 35/37° with peaks of 39/40° more or less since the end of June. The wildlife, the birds, the vegetation, everything is suffering. And you’re right, this isn’t a blip.
I hope you get rain soon. We had a terrible drought with lots of fires that finally broke in 2020. Since then it’s been raining to the point that we’ve had lots of flooding. I’d still rather have floods than fires.
Thank you. It’s doubtful we’ll get any rain before September. Idiots are still lighting fires ‘to have fun’ and forests are burning everywhere.
I know what you mean about the flooding. Flood water stops when it meets a physical obstacle. Flames don’t obey the same rules.