Dear Summer: Summer in the City


Nearly half of the country is oppressed by the heat today; here in the Northeast, we hovering around 100 degrees for the next few days, so the jheri-curl alert is at fire engine red. You know what that means, tuck away the brown liquor, Niggas don’t need any more reason to kill one another, 50 Cent told yall, “It’s hot outside, that’s a good enough reason!”
But Summer doesn’t understand that, Summer doesn’t shed tears for a fallen soldier or the caught up, she eats them alive. Year after year we fall into the trap set by Summer’s allies, June, July and August; running into the sunshine, shedding Winter’s grasp and the inhibitions that came with it. Lately, it seems Summer brings more grief than most of us have ever known, we lose friends and lovers and some of us have even lost our minds!

I handle the dog days of Summer with the same approach as a Saturday in January, it’s another day, but many of you haven’t learned to temper your excitement when the mercury rises. Because of this, we spent more time wishing it will cool down, praying for the return of Autumn’s wind or Spring’s rain and in between burying the son of your mother’s friend. That’s what Summer leaves us with each year, thinking why or how, but we look forward to her return regardless of what pain many of us feel when she’s around.
Gunshots or shots of Henny, year round rituals intensified by the heat and as we near triple digits, they’re only outbid by tears for those who’ve fallen to Summer’s wiles. So, as many are trying to reconcile their feelings or find comfort in the sun, can you remember finding a rose in the winter? The seasons change, we don’t. They will continue to replace one another, occasionally overstaying their welcome and we will live within them, complaining and dealing, living or refusing life. Or, waiting for death to appreciate this thing called life…

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