Dog Days of Summer

As the days meander through
long sun-filled afternoons
when a lack of breeze allows
the pollution of the city
to gather, unseen but deadly,
in the air outside my window

I sit upon my sofa
beside a writing pad
complete with list
which gradually,
or maybe not,
gets ticked off
as the week proceeds;

it is a measure of progress
throughout my days
which otherwise, if I let them,
could merge one into another
and all appear the same.


25 Responses to “Dog Days of Summer”

  1. Glad you are back 🙂 Lovely, though a bit depressive, poem. Somehow Summer sounds like suffering. Maybe it is time to spend some days at the seaside!
    It will be fall before you know it, if that is any comfort 🙂

    {{{ big dutch hug }}} and take it easy!

    • belfastdavid Says:

      Thank you Ina,

      For reasons which I do not understand I find the summer months (July and August) dificult, often leaving me in a depressed frame of mind. I know it will pass because it always has but I am always glad when September arrives.

      Thank you for the hugs – they always help.
      And I will take it easy 🙂

      (((Big Irish Hug)))

  2. Maybe it is because in Summer many people seem so cheerful, out of proportions! They make others feel like they do things wrong. What secret do they have to be so happy!

    I had those feelings for a while when I was a child. Summer meant everyone was happy but me as I couldn’t enjoy. My mother was a beach lover so I spent lots of days in full sun that ended with blisters all over. My friends were envious of a mother who would take time for all days on the beach and I just wanted to be home reading lol. I thought I was the only one hating Summer.

    It was over when I got children myself .
    Sorry to hear this time of year means you feel down. Some have that with Autumn.
    If it helps, I’ll hug you till Fall 🙂

    • belfastdavid Says:

      I have no idea Ina why it happens.

      Although, unlike you, it seems to be a later-in-life thing – last 10 or 15 years I think. all I know is that it appears to happen almost every year. but I do know it will pass. There may well be a physical component to it in that I do find oppressive heat hard to take – I should really spend my summers by the seaside 🙂

      I am smiling at the thought of you just “wanting to be at home reading”. you would get on well with my younger son who goes nowhere without a book – whether it be the mountains of the Himalayas or the beaches of India 🙂

      I shall take your hug with me throughout the summer 🙂


  3. Comment in moderation… not sure why. 🙂

  4. Vera Hazelgrove Says:

    I sympathize, I find summer more difficult too.
    The heat is so oppressive and limiting,

    – but in all that you have the good idea to itemize and track your progress and see small steps giving those days some meaning!
    Clever David 🙂
    Very nicely written,

    Hope you will get some cooler days soon,

    with Love
    Vera & Karley

    • belfastdavid Says:

      Thank you Vera,

      It is comforting to know it is not only me who feels that way.
      I shall contemplate some days out at the seaside over the forthcoming weeks – a sea breeze always makes me feel better 🙂

      There is great satisfaction in ticking off a list, particularly on days when I feel down!! 🙂

      I hope you and Karley have a good week

      With love

  5. Hi David,

    This is a very lovely and gentle poem.
    I empathise with it a lot. I think we all at times struggle with meaning in our lives. The list is such a great idea. 🙂
    I like your open descriptions too. I can very much envisage you looking out and over the city wrapped in haze of summer smog.
    For myself I get the opposite I’m a winter blues kind of person. The cold leaves me rather miserable.
    I always try to remind myself that nothing lasts, it will pass. 🙂
    I hope the smog lifts for you soon. 🙂

    Take good care my friend

    • belfastdavid Says:

      Thank you Tikarma,

      There is great comfort in the knowledge that “this too shall pass”. Even if on some days it is hard to believe that 🙂

      I think it is fascinating the way different times of the year affect different people. I have another friend who finds October profoundly difficult. And I don’t think we ever really understand why – we may be able to rationalise it but never truely get to the bottom of it!

      The best I can do is accept it happens and then get on with it – hence the poem I guess 🙂

      I will take good care.
      And you


  6. christine Says:

    Oh David, this has made me feel sad for you. I know how difficult you find July and particularly August I think you said, and it must be even worse at the moment, while you are feeling so unwell.
    However it is a lovely poem full of feeling.

    I will be there for you on Wednesday however you are feeling to give you lots and lots of hugs.

    Lots of love and extra hugs



    • belfastdavid Says:


      Ah, don’t feel sad for me Christine – It is the way it is and I will get on with it 🙂
      Just some days I may not be as good company as I usually am. Don’t let me start feeling sorry for myself!!! 🙂

      Lots and lots of hugs are good – even virtual ones 🙂

      We shall have to see what Wednesday brings but would be good to see you if it works out 🙂

      Hugs to you too

  7. Hey David,

    It is hot as Hades where I live and like the equator too with the humidity. If I don’t go to the beach what else can I do in that oppression except put ice cubes on my body and not move too much. Get thee to a beach!! The rhyme is lovely as always.


    • belfastdavid Says:

      Thank you Cathy,

      In particular for making me smile 🙂
      My nearest beach is seventy miles away but I can get there by train in about ninety minutes – It is in the plan!!

      Hugs are always very welcome

      Hugs back to you

  8. Thank you for this one, David – I know exactly where you’re coming from, and I’m with you in spirit. I’m getting through July thanks to Le Tour, but without it, I’d be feeling the same ennui and sense of ‘drift’ you express so eloquently here. The main thing is you’re still writing – and beautifully – so I’m confident that, as Tikarma says, ‘this too shall pass’. I hope things get better for you soon, my friend; we’re thinking of you.

    • belfastdavid Says:

      Thank you Nick,

      Your thoughts are much appreciated. It is always reassuring at these times to know that people both understand and care.

      Writing is such a good way of keeping myself going when I am feeling down. It helps too make sense of what can appear irrational.

      I do know “this too shall pass” because it always has. In the meantime I look after the small things –

      H unger
      A nger
      L onely
      T ired

      Enjoy the rest of Le Tour


  9. midaevalmaiden Says:

    Well you did a great job representing summer as a bleak thing to endure. 🙂 I sometimes wonder if it isnt the time of season a person is born in. I was born in the hottest month, and I love july and august. But many I know that dislike summer were born in the winter months. Thats my theory, and Im sticking to it. 🙂

    • belfastdavid Says:

      *Big Smile*

      An interesting theory. I was born in September and my favourite season is the autumn – so I guess that adds weight to your theory 🙂

      Good to have you visit.
      I will put a link to your blog up on my Home Page – I hope you don’t mind


      • midaevalmaiden Says:

        Thanks. I think I already did yours, but Ill double check it, just in case. 🙂

  10. Lovely, David. I, too, must measure my progress lest hours turn to days turn to weeks turn to months turn to years. I kid you not. I have lost entire years! There’s always tomorrow and all that, you know. 🙂

    • belfastdavid Says:


      I lost a lot of years Susan when I was drinking – I do my best to keep them now.
      Although the older I get the faster they seem to go past 🙂


  11. things “to do” … can see what you mean, though i could never get into accomplishment-by-listing. it always seemed backwards, like instead of “checking them off” … one should be adding to the list of things finished. sort of like turning something inside out and dreamt finished before it’s even begun. and i was always just happy with the dream! hehe ….

    sometimes is think the only reason my days don’t ‘bleed together’ is because jon stewart doesn’t air on fridays, saturdays and sundays 🙂

    • belfastdavid Says:

      *Big Smile*

      I can drive myself mad with lists Eileen if I am not careful, particularly if I make myself a prisoner of them, or if I turn pleasures into chores by putting them on a to-do list!!

      However, my memory being what it is, if I don’t write things down they have a tendency not to happen!!!!

      I don’t have jon stewart but in the winter months my weeks can be regulated by football (soccer to you) matches!!! *Grin*


  12. Irish,

    Well, this is more complicated than it first appears (a geode, maybe). I do like it.

    I am impressed with the way you roam in what appears to be an aimless fashion from one thought to another, then draw it all together in a tight poem. But, that is the way those days play us, isn’t it? You have to nudge yourself, lazily sometimes, to get away from feeling suppressed by the weight of summer. It takes discipline to move forward–like a list we keep to remind ourselves that we are still alive and able to control our own movements.

    Making the list is important, but marking the items off is rewarding.
    I hope your most important to-do’s get marked though soon, and I hope they are all very rewarding.

    Much love,

    • belfastdavid Says:

      Thank you Shirley,

      I am always entertained (when I step back far enough to look at the bigger picture) at the way life works.
      I suddenly and unexpectedly have a whole new to-do list with the death of my previous computer!! Now I have a whole new set of things to do which should keep me busy through the dog days!! 🙂
      And a whole new set of potential frustrations on the way!! 🙂

      My love to you

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