It is Must be Summer

In the center of Treadwell Woods, a single salmon berry flower bounces gently up and down. It is moved, not by wind, but by the heavy raindrops falling through the forest canopy. This far away from the beach, the magenta-colored flower is the only thing challenging the trees’ monopoly of grays and browns.             

            As Aki moves ahead, excited by a pee mail message left by an earlier canine visitor, I stay with the flower, remembering a visit made years ago to my carving class by a Haida elder. Her eyes promised the delivery of an exciting message. It is summer. I just saw my first salmon berry blossom. 

            The little dog and I move through the woods and drop onto Sandy Beach. It is empty except for a bald eagle. The big bird perches on top of the old ventilator tower, its feathers soaked and askew.  Wind driven rain sweeps down the beach, making me wince and Aki shiver.  It feels more like early winter than summer. But salmon berry blossoms provide color along the beach’s edge. Summer can’t be denied. 

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