It’s true. Shakespeare did say it best, “All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players”. The great bard warns us: realize that you are an actor in a ‘temporary’ life, because your days will come to a conclusion. Take advantage, Shakespeare advises, always give your best performance!
And when it comes to cautionary tales, Nelly nails it too. in his 2010 melancholy “love-lost” song Just a Dream, he reflects “So I traveled back down that road, Will she come back, no one knows, I realize, yeah, it was only just a dream.” Some journeys are transient, Nelly urges, you will wake up, and the good times will be just a memory, so fully enjoy your beloved!
It then occurred to me,
“Isn’t Summer the Lover we all long for?”
And, as she gets ready to depart,
Nelly, you (my dear reader), and me can be sure of one thing:
this 2017 ultimate lover, named Summer,
like Nelly’s long gone ‘shawty’, is not coming back!
So, what’s a warmth-deprived New Englander to do?
Nelly says something in the second stanza of his rap, that picks me up from a potential depression: “Cause I can still feel her in the air, See her pretty face, run my fingers through her hair…”
Thankfully, no one or no thing, Nelly suggests, be it a lover or a warm summer evening, ever leaves us without some lingering, happy memories…
I notice, as Nelly croons, he’s all constricted emotionally inside: “She left me, I’m tied, ‘Cause I knew it just ain’t right.” Clearly, at the moment he sings, he is so sure — she WAS the ONE. And he states, “I blew it.”
In other words, he didn’t appreciate her. So, she left… And I can relate.
Because, in New England, our greatest love affair is with Summer. She IS “our” ONE. We wait for her, nine long chilly months. Whether we appreciate her or not, she always arrives. But, she always leaves…
Through icy-cold sleet and mounds of snow we fantasize of her arrival.
And upon her long awaited knock on our door, oh we know, she is BETTER than the fantasy.
For two months, we then play like small children in a wide open field — the possibilities for adventure seem endless! And like any good lover, she (or he) shows up well adorned. Our beloved brings flowers. Our beloved brings sweet treats. Our beloved holds us in warm arms and showers us with endless affection.
Our beloved is Fun. Delicious. Delightful.
We bask in what Nelly says, “She was (or is) so easy to love.”
But then, our adored Summer does “move on” from us…
Oh, it’s true, Dear Nelly:
“It just ain’t right.”
Why does she need to leave?
We didn’t ride our bikes enough, wade in ocean waters long or deep enough, sleep late enough days — and I know I certainly need to eat a whole bunch more sticky cotton candy, powdery fried dough and refreshing gelato before this shindig passes!
Nelly, I understand the internal tug of not wanting my lover, my Summer, to leave me… maybe, if I could give her just a bit more appreciation… then, maybe she would STAY…
Nelly with remorse you state, “Now they’re gone and your wishing you could give them everything.” And I begin wishing the same.
But wait! Right at the height of Nelly’s regret, he does something spectacular!
He begs us, the objects of our lover’s affection, to do something right now, before it is too late, it is the opposite of remorse it is revel:
“If you ever loved somebody put your hands up; if you’ve ever loved somebody put your hands up; if you’ve ever loved somebody put your hands up.”
Nelly cheers and chants it out!
AND right now I PUT MY HANDS UP! I Cheer it out!
Because if summer is my lover, before the inevitable departure, I want to touch her, stare into her eyes, linger on an Adirondack chair with her, and study with her the bees that are busy on all the flowers she has gifted me!
I want to throw a Frisbee with a hyper-active dog, and grab a kayak, take along my best friend, and float fast down a river rapids one last time before we say “goodbye”.
I want her to know: I love her. I appreciate her.
And I will always welcome her back!
I want her to know it now.
Because, Summer hasn’t left me yet!
Shakespeare and Nelly. Both are great philosophers. Essentially, they preach the same thing: life is passing us by. Life is a summer blockbuster film, with buttery popcorn and booming surround sound, visceral while attending, but our awaited experiences will be over before we know it.
And as our Summer comes to her pretty close, I invite you to get quiet (or get raucous if you prefer!), travel down memory lane, revel in the warmth of your sunny memories, and go out and create a couple more.
It is not too late.
Grab your Summer lover, one last time. Stare into that pretty face. Run your fingers through that silky hair. Feel that love-in-the-air moment by taking a deep, long, glorious breath.
Enjoy the “US” while you have the “us”.
Because before you know it, you will open your eyes and start singing the refrain, with Nelly, and with me, “It was only just a dream.”
Now, stop reading and go throw that Frisbee!
I am wishing you a lovely lingering Summer Dream.
And in case you do get a bit melancholy:
There’s good news: Summer is the lover who will always return 🙂
Blessings and Peace,