No Better Summer

The first harvest in the bottomland
is not wheat or barley
but Monarch butterflies
who stop for the milkweed
as they pass through.

It reminds me of you.
The last time we walked
the trail by the river.
The mud that collected
on our boots.

It is your fifth day visiting
your mother out of state.
Out of my life for a few days
except by phone and FaceTime.
I miss our familiarity.

I miss the sound of your feet
on the wool carpet.
The bite of paper into the charcoal
as you create new drawings.
The periodic whistle of the kettle
as you prepare hot tea.

There is no better summer than your hug.
Or observing you being yourself
unaware of my presence
no matter your task or leisure.

copyright © 2021 Kenneth P. Gurney