The summer sun bathes all

in a golden glow,

a glow of burnished bronze

before scorching.

A little Icarus stands before me,

sobbing over a red popsicle

melting at his feet,

feathers once floating

in midair—

for a moment

all things were possible—

now white down sticks to puddles

of liquid wax.

If you’ve read my last post: Song of Seattle, you know that I planned to share tips for thriving in a cold, rainy (perhaps hostile) environment. But all that seems irrelevant now as the temperatures rise. Especially now that my old, rainy home, the Pacific Northwest, is currently experiencing, of all things, a strong heat wave this very moment!

I think the memory of cold, rainy Seattle hit me as we were experiencing a strong storm cycle here in Berlin (there was heavy rainfall this summer, which is also rare), but now the storm has passed and my melancholy mood with it. But I will revisit the subject again soon, especially as the summer draws to a close.

Lately, I’ve been spending most of my time outside with my kids, building sand forts, splashing in pools and fountains, eating ice cream, and trying to discourage my toddler from catching ants (he smiles and says “Spider!” as they wriggle helplessly between his fingers!). So now it’s only fitting that I share a summer pictorial with you. This is a small collection of my favorite photos from hot summer days in Macedonia and Greece.

As you can see, I love red poppies. The flower is very exotic to me, I actually never saw one in person until I was a teenager! Although I had seen them many times in books, especially as decorative borders in Art Nouveau illustrations and illuminated manuscripts. I’ll never forget seeing fields of wild poppies for the first time as I arrived in northern Greece. Poppies are both delicate and bold, mysterious and somber, bright and hopeful. They thrive in hot, arid landscapes, places often dry and monotone until they bloom. For a time, though brief, the deserts flutter, twirl and flash the most daring of colors.

Text and images by M.P. Baecker

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