Sprinklers and Sparklers and Freedom! Oh, My!

Long ago and far away, when metal feed-store thermometers dangled next to mops and buckets on the back stoop, heat indices weren’t yet in fashion.

In those far-away times, summer began with mirages: pools of imaginary water shimmering above the asphalt — swirling, receding, and evaporating before our eyes as we traveled.

In summer, heavy, breathless nights made sleep impossible. Even the heat-heavy trees murmured and complained as we dragged cots from the house and lay beneath the stars, surrounded and lured toward dreams by the chirring of unseen crickets.
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