Every year we forget how it is,
re-born suddenly the rose gold light.
Subway strangers start to smile again
(and innocently).

It shook our faith when it snowed on Easter.
When the heat bill came for April.
When January felt eternal.

Despite my efforts,
I couldn’t be like that girl I follow on Instagram
(And also met once in real life)
who moved to the Arctic circle for work and adventures
and made a point to never complain about the cold.

At least she knew what she was getting into.

But now that strawberries and weddings are back in season,
we walk to work and order the kale salad.
We even smoke fewer cigarettes (unless we are single at the weddings).
We remember that nothing lasts forever (unless we are the ones getting married).

We practice our asanas to adjust to the humidity.
We parade our pale thighs (or not—depending on what side of the park you live on)
and worship the possibility of picnics, praying:

We believe in the solstice spirit
the holy Prospect Park
the fellowship of friends
the prayers of all people
the rotation of the earth
and the light everlasting.

By August, some will have converted,
angrily sweating through business casual,
dodging the Times Square tourists
and the scowling woman on the subways who asks if you know
what will happen to your soul if you don’t repent and believe?

But I gave up on hell a long time ago.
And I can understand why you’d want to worship the sun.

Caroline Higgins

Caroline Higgins (’11) lives in Brooklyn, New York, where she spends the vast majority of her time teaching English Language Arts. You may also find her at barre exercise classes or playing (and losing) at bar trivia. She continues to be inspired by the energy and diversity of New York City and the beauty of that certain slant of light.

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