The height of summer here. The heat today reminds me of Vietnam. We're fortunate to live right on the river & in among the trees. I spent the evening sitting on the deck drinking beer, reading a Patrick O'Brian novel, burning cheap Vietnamese temple incense to keep the insects at bay. It's too strong to burn indoors. I brought several hundred sticks home with me several years ago, but this summer will see the end of it. Time to go back to Vietnam, my paradise, to get some more. Soon it will be time for planning the semester, meetings, wearing more than a pair of shorts, but I have another week or tend ays to finish up my house projects & enjoy the summertime. And I have time to finish this last O'Brian novel -- I've read four this summer, along with a few more serious things -- before turning to reviwing the books my students will be reading & a couple of things I have been asked to review. I also have a small book proposal I've been working up, which will no doubt come into its own with cooler weather. For now, my pepper plants are bearing bountifully & I look forward to several strings of dried chilies hanging above the wood stove this fall.

Author: jd

Joseph Duemer is Professor of Literature Emeritus at Clarkson University in northern New York state. His most recent book of poems is Magical Thinking from Ohio State University Press. Since the mid-1990s he has spent a good deal of time in Vietnam, mostly Hanoi. He lives with his wife Carole & five terriers (four Jack Russells & one Patterdale) on the stony bank of the Raquette River in South Colton.

1 thought on “Hot”

  1. MUGGY

    Baby snails fill the wet
    newly-sprouted summer lawn
    but I have the whole day
    how young to think so

    don’t you after all sense
    it’s rhythm builds forms
    past shape or feeling that
    maybe it’s the last days of

    thinking our inner ice-caps
    melt into hazy drizzle
    as we watch and sink

    so when you walk out
    no matter where you go
    you kill some one or some thing.

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