GIVE ME A PERFECT summer evening in my Minnesota backyard.
Mix it with a margarita or a bloody Mary.
Add a dash of fire flaming from the fire pit and from tiki torches.
Toss in the soft glow of candlelight flickering on a whisper of wind.
Give me a magazine or a book and the man I love relaxing next to me, the two of us, side-by-side in our lawn chairs. Quiet conversation and the rustle of papers.
Fireflies court, flitting across the yard on an uncharted course to find love.
We observe them. I wish aloud to photograph their magical light and my husband rises to capture a firefly, to clasp it between his hands. I try, without success, to photograph a bug I cannot see. “This is impossible,” I say, and settle back into my lawn chair near the fire.
I resume reading, thumbing through recipes for cheesecake until pinpoints of intermittent rain splatter upon my magazine.
It is time to put away the reading materials, to grab the ingredients for smores and roast marshmallows. Just as I extend the marshmallows over the fire, the rain begins falling at a rapid rate, soaking my bent back.
My husband picks up lawn chairs and tiki torches and tends the fire.
I hurry along the toasting and then rush inside to assemble the smores.
Even with the rain, it’s been a perfect summer evening in my Minnesota backyard.
© Copyright 2012 Audrey Kletscher Helbling