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SUMMER NIGHT IN NEW HOPE, MINNESOTA NATALIE SIEDE When my parents tell me they’re going north for the weekend, I feign jealousy, give quiet thanks, and tell them to send pictures from whatever friend’s cabin they’ll be staying at. I wait until their car is over the hill to turn off the air conditioning. I like to keep my windows open during the summer. Especially at night, when I can hear the crickets and toads and the rare owls’ calls echoing from the backyard all the way to the pond runoff past the woods. I like to have the house to myself, to fill every room as I choose, to sing loud and not be quieted for the sake of quiet. My room is my favorite shade of green: soft and mossy in daylight, then warm and earthy-gold at night when I light a beeswax candle with a twine wick and watch as it runs down the side of itself like honey. It’s so easy to forget what the heat gives back to us when we keep the house chilled in the summer, after the winter takes so much and we spend all spring trying to remember ourselves out of the cold. I open both windows wide like arms to the night and feel the night air pour in and gather on the carpet like dew on the grass. I let it remind my skin what balmy means. siede 3

Profile for Red Cedar Review

Red Cedar Review Vol. 54  

Red Cedar Review Vol. 54  

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