Body clock set to Vienna day trips,
walks atop the white cliffs of Dover, avoiding sunburn in Roman forums - only here it's flexed bare chests, belly buttons pierce snail trail hair, while tattoos sweat through skin. Discount ***** hangs on booming breath, headache-inducing marijuana stench crawls up nostrils from inside pockets like a chef advertising to the streets via an air vent. Craving cartoon fantasy - empathy in the world, even for humidity, as we wait for a break in proceedings, I pray the thunderstorms bring fresh relief.
Poem #22 from my collection 'A Shropshire Grad'. Reminicsing about the 30-degree heat I've experienced whilst being stuck in work and UK lockdown.
Away, not home,
this continental heat. The air pretends this North Atlantic rock is worldly The smiles of the natives lean manic as we clutch at multipack lager and disposable charcoal, grasp at the living myth of a cloudless sky and give ourselves to these gods Our worship sees us sacrifice meat and skin, both burnt to early hours regret and delicate, bathroom sorrows A sporadic bacchanal whose scarcity ensures that be it working week, weekend or holiday, feverish we’ll pay the tithe Sunstroke and/or hangover prove penance for our lapse from the frigid, three bar Protestant norm, but these exotic gods will beguile again even as the blistered skin still peels
It got to 34C/93F here today. Not such a common thing, there will be casualties...
After the rain, the heat breaks and dissipates,
and the air sits lightly on my skin. There is space for us to breathe. For some time, our nostrils wistfully recall the pavement's sweltering heat as fat droplets hurled themselves to destruction.
I just watched a news report:
there’s a heatwave in Europe over 41 degrees celcius! Forests are on fire, people are uncomfortably sweltering, the old and sick are dying, climate change is happening! I wonder when will society become desperate enough about dangerous climate change to stop using carbon-emitting fuels and instead use renewable energies like solar, wind and hydro?
An orange sun shimmering with heat
Blankets its cloud all over our heads Your eyes fill with wonder and stars Gazing at the trees unevenly spread We talk of fantasies and breathless sighs And romance we have never known While all the butterflies vibrate with ecstasy And the sky, into our heads, is sewn Little crystals melt on our tongues Honey dripped bees infect our sights Faintly, on the other side of the desert Our threat awaits, patient as night Orange sun begins to paint the world As leaves fall like words murmured Buzzing hummingbirds cry out in alarm And the edge of our vision is blurred
If you don't mind it, love
I believe I must ask: Why is it that Even when Summer begins to die This heat never seems to fade away, too? Solstice is bleeding out in the streets every night Those fallen leaves, shielding her body And yet, here in September I'm still drunk on that brand-new sunshine That makes me want to lie down with you. I wish you and I could find a cold place A secret pathway into Autumn's sweetly perfumed arms But, love, if that's not happening Perhaps we should go where the sun shines brightest And revel in a halo of blistering light. Perhaps we could peel away All the formality Just to keep cool Every layer of reserve Long gone by the end of the day. Of course You'll see every imperfection And I'll know it But I won't mind As long as each one gets attention from your fingertips. I'll find Spring in your skin And you'll taste Winter on my lips And Summer and her fatal fever Will be no match for us. In fact, we'll barely feel her harsh kiss Streaming through the window Into our little room Where everything feels just right. So, if you don't mind it, love I believe that you should follow me into this retreat Where we can embrace this heatwave.
Why is it so hot on Labor Day?
Throat is sore
Glands are up Banging head Down on my luck Confined to my bed But too hot to sleep Missing the air con But for work I’m too weak Swimming in My own sweat Stuck to the sheets Which are wringing wet Like a water bed Or rather a paddling pool My mattress has become la mer But it’s stifling as oppose to cool Life in the attic Is an arduous affair Sub Siberian in winter Sweltering in summer sans any air Oh, bring me an oscillating fan! To waft me as I ail In silver or white but definitely not black Coordination with decor must prevail I scour Argos and Amazon online But the fans are so plentiful I cannot decide Which one to order And can they deliver? Oh f**k, they’ve sold out That’ll teach me to dither! I’ll take a cold shower If I can muster up the strength To stand up for long enough To get myself drenched Nay, I’m too frail At least at the minute Thus my sweat sodden bed Retains me in it If I could just sleep awhile Replenish my energy Of this BO ridden pit Could I at last be free But this lurgey with which I’m afflicted Coupled with the heat Is keeping me awake Sedate me, oh somebody, please! I shouldn’t complain It’s nice to have sun But being broiled alive Isn’t very much fun Thus with the lobster I utterly empathise So torcherous and barbaric A way to meet one’s demise Fortunately I’m not a crustacean Forcibly yanked by a net from the sea I’m merely a girl with a viral complaint Not viewed as a delicacy Thus I should quit whining And focus on being ill For my head in the freezer could I stick And with the frozen peas chill.
This muggy, sultry sun is no fun:
Longest sustained heatwave for over forty years. Suffocating Sahara with Death Valley cracks In the dry arid soil. My electric fan shattered with a power surge Into fragmented plastic shards. I so miss it now. It’s oppressively tropical, With volcanic heat And Pressure bearing down on us. The clammy mugginess of a sauna. Not the clean dry air you find abroad, Yet still that remorseless torrid scorching, Roasting and toasting. Just too much. Hot air clothed in humid moisture, Stuffy and sweaty, Steaming to a haze And later Thunder storms. I long for a cool brew To freeze my throat And quench my raging thirst: Ice cool, ice cool, ice cool. I’m sure not talking Of tea. Paul Butters © PB 6\8\2018.
Hottest heatwave in the UK since 1976.