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Today, August 10, 2009, the heat index is 103 degrees at two p.m. in this small town by the river in Eastern North
Carolina. I sit inside my apartment with shirt and shoes off, the air conditioner roaring, and two fans spinning and whirring. I'm reading translations of Japanese haiku, and I jot down a verse of my own every now and then.
Suddenly, the sounds of a riding mower roar past the closed vertical blinds of the shut sliding glass patio door.
I can't imagine anyone being out in this heat mowing even a small lawn, never mind this huge yard!
The birds are smartly well-hidden in the trees and bushes, the deer in the woods, the foxes and groundhogs in their underground dens, and the fish and turtles deep in the murky river. And of course, I'm cool and comfortable inside this small apartment.
But outside the mower goes back and forth, back and forth, back and forth, back and forth . . .
a white butterfly
perched on a dandelion