Summer is like old gold, dark with age. You feel its strength become mellow and pliable in the soft breezes. There is wisdom in the heat that still simmers along the edges of noon, as if it were trying to tell us that illness or aging are as natural as drawing breath. The dry, brown fields are waiting for fall to bring rain. The oaks are twisted and gnarled on the side of the road, and birds are no longer eagerly singing songs about the future. Even the little village bar is
The village is getting ready to celebrate one of the great turning points of the year, the feast of the Assumption on August 15th, when Mary rises on the shoulders of ecstatic angels into the fleecy blue heavens. She looks upward with a beatific expression, her hands outstretched. She is dressed in the colors of the planet, cloud white, deep-sea blue, with touches here and there of silvery stars. As my neighbor reminded me, not only Christians bow down to Mary, so do Muslims.