Where did it come from? I suppose like a rain storm the people who study such things can see a heat wave coming. For me it seems to come from no where, appearing like a mushroom, one day nothing, the next day BOOM.
The Heat changes everything and it changes everything fast. I’m not yet ready for this much intensity, this much fire. We are smack mid-Spring, which some call early Summer. With that Mid-Summer mind set I can allow The Heat. I prefer to refer to May Day as Mid-Spring; a day aligned with freshness and blossoms, with flowers that promise fruit.
One can sense it, like a presence in your home, or someone standing behind you in line. It permeates everything, changing dynamics and energy. The Heat builds. The Heat boils.
The Heat is what takes the last of the Winter crops and disintegrates them. Some may cheer to hear that cabbages have gone to cheerful flower, that the longer, light—filled days have extended the trunks of the kale, turning their leaves lush and broad and bitter. The Heat bids Winter a cocky good-bye.
The Heat is what takes the first of the Summer crops and intensifies them.
Heat pops Summer Squash turning leggy, spindly weaklings into radically robust rascals, bullying their way past the row limits. The ragged yellow blossoms crown the ends of Gold Bar and Eight Ball. The precious pepper transplants of a few weeks ago swell like waves in The Heat. Berries range. Cucumbers ramble. Melons roam. Sunflowers intend.
The forecast calls for many more days of this intensity, of this thing that moves us internally. The way my body feels in The Heat is different than the way it feels in The Wet or The Cold or The Wind. It’s a vigor and a tension. It’s a force. It’s a burn.
Warm season crops yield wide shady, sometimes spiny leaves. These leaves protect the precious and propitious fruit, they provide shadow for the roots, slowing the evaporation of the irrigation. The needles on the leaves slow the rays of the sun; they offer an additional shielding layer, a little bit less exposure. Just one more thing for blatant rays to penetrate. How do you proceed in unavoidable, thorny situations? I imagine slowly; moderately. So move the beams of light across the prickles and spines.
The pepper plants promise with their galaxy of names: Cherry Bomb, Bulgarian Carrot, Hungarian Black, Padron, Aji. A Diva cuke saunters in the mix. The summer squash scratches. All foretellers of Summer. All Spring flowers. All propelled to burgeon in The Heat.