Moving through air thick as pudding
as sun waves radiate the neck.

Tugging at the sweat-damp shirt
stuck to the small of the back.

Fighting the tingle of bite welts
on the ankle.

Without these there is no balm of escape.

No entering cool conditioned air
like a ghost walking through a wall.

No craving cold flow down the throat
from a clinky-ice drink.

No salvation of lotion
on hot skin and itches.

This is summer.