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A Sommelier of Summer

July 27, 2016


A Sommelier of Summer


by Alice Jane-Marie Massa



I am a sommelier of summer–

not of summer wines, just of the season

about which I sometimes whine.


Summarizing, I wish I could somehow return

to the somersault summers of my childhood years

when I so awaited and relished

the hottest days of the sizzling season,

when swimming was the sparkle of life.

I could even summon up sweat-free and unmelted moments

in my young adult life

when I did not need to summon up courage

to face or frolic in the summer sun.


Like a shadow, this season of growth

is behind me:

now I summit

the autumn of life’s falling stages

and am uncomfortable in the sunshine season.


I have been too winterized

by decades of Wisconsin winters.

Should I admit?

On one of the recent high heat-indexed days,

I was dreaming of a blizzard!

(I do not mean a Blizzard of the DQ variety.)

I mentioned to a fellow Wisconsinite

the cool thought of a real blizzard.

Such thoughts were even more soothing

than my currently beloved air conditioning.

What a sumptuous treat

after a long walk with my Willow!


Sometime in January,

When only Willow warms my heart,

someone will remind me

of this summertime poem;

and in the midst of a real blizzard,

I will have to eat my snowflakes

and re-boot to appreciate

a sommelier of summer.



Enjoy the remaining few days of this hot July!

Alice and Willow (my absolutely wonderful Leader Dog for whom I am so especially grateful)


July 27, 2016, Wednesday



From → Uncategorized

  1. Fran Rayce permalink

    Alice, I love the lilting language and tone of this fun piece! We are such fickle folks, always wanting the weather to be slightly different than our reality. How fortunate that in the Midwest we can always count on things changing quickly. Stay cool as you look forward to fall
    Fondly, Fran

    • Fran–I do appreciate your comment. I heard about the lovely photo of your four grandchildren with you. How special!

      Take care–Alice and Willow

  2. Alice. Words escape me. What can I say about a piece of writing that has your watermark all over it? I picture you and Willow heading down the lane, and a wonderful smile fills my day. With a path of inspiration at your fingertips, I wish you nothing but the best in your journey. Thanks for the smile. dp

  3. We all wish the hot days of summer would go away, but in winter, when we slip-slide along icy sidewalks and land on our back sides, we long for summer.

  4. Thank you for this delightful and clever poem, Alice! Just reading it is refreshing to me. Wishing you and Willow many more enjoyable summer days before the cold Wisconsin winter arrives!
    Love, Mary

    • Mary–Thanks for your comment! We could send to your dry climate a parachute full of humidity today!

      Have a swimmingly good weekend–A & W

  5. I am sure that you were quite an inspiration to your students, Alice, especially during the poetry portion in your classroom. This is another excellent addition to your blog and one of my favorites as we look forward to cooler temps.

    • Carole–Thanks for reading and commenting on my blog. Also, thanks for the “likes.”

      Take good care! Enjoy a cooler Sunday–Alice and Willow

  6. Sue McKendry permalink

    It’s a real talent to be able to put so many pictures in a poem that resonates with so many of us who are in the autumn, if not winter of our life. Most of us Midwesterners can remember how we embraced the heat of summer, including baking ourselves in the sun for that perfect tan — before we knew it was bad for us. I’m always somewhat amazed when I now seek the shady as opposed to the sunny spot to relax or work. And if this is how we feel, I bet Willow, with her beautiful black coat, agrees wholeheartedly.

    • Sue–Thanks so much for your perceptive comment!

      Follow the shade and Happy August–Alice and Willow

  7. I think this is my favorite poem, Alice! I love the use of language and repetition of imagery and sounds. You capture how we all feel at this time of year, when we run for our air-conditioned homes to avoid the sweltering heat.

    • Lynda–What a nice comment! Thank you!

      Stay cool and have a good writing day–Alice and Willow

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