With Labor Day pegged as the unofficial close of summer, bibliophiles have a little more than five weeks left in their summer reading season. That simple math reminds us that summer doesn’t last forever, although the best writers have a way of seizing one’s attention for a moment or two and providing the pleasant illusion that time has stood still. That special quality of expression seems especially vivid when authors embrace summer itself as a subject. Here, to mark a season that’s still got some life left in it, are five celebrations of summer from American writers.
“Supper was at six and was over by half past. There was still daylight, shining softly and with a tarnish, like the lining of a shell; and the carbon lamps lifted at the corners were on in the light, and the locusts were started, and the fire flies were out, and a few frogs were flopping in the dewy grass, by the time the fathers and the children came out. The children ran out first hell bent and yelling those names by which they were known; then the fathers sank out leisurely in crossed suspenders, their collars removed and their necks looking tall and shy.”