September is an impersonator. It wants to be July; it wants to be summer; it wants to be anything but itself. I first caught a glimpse of its devious nature when I was five. Let me see; it was Ms. Larson’s crayon-drawing-plastered Kindergarten classroom where I first glimpsed September’s perfidious face.
“I don’t want to go!”
“Remember, honey, we discussed this already. It’s time for school.”
“It’s not school. It’s summer!” I pointed to the flies buzzing nearby, and fanned myself, pretending to look faint.
“Oh dear, stop being so dramatic. It’s not summer, just September.”
Ah, september, just september. That was its first nasty sneer at me, caging me in a sweltering classroom filled with sticky fingers and hair-pulling little demons.
And then there was third grade. Long division and squiggly symbols that swam across the blackboard. Only nine and already I had a daily migraine! Pentagon, hexagon, septagon, octagon. Ah yes, here comes the second lie. Pent, five; hex, six; sept, seven--and there was the problem, glaring me in the face: why, SEPTember didn’t have seven of anything! It was not the seventh month--that was July. It didn’t have seven days, or seventy seven. I couldn’t find any sort of association with the number. How deceptive. Man, it really threw me for a loop.
But that’s just September for you. It’s not definable or dissectible. It’s never here nor there.
Have you ever noticed that nothing is distinctly September? December has its chill and its cheer, May has its rains and fresh shoots, June has its blooms and the first hints of the inferno, November has its warm fullness and pumpkin pies. But September? While hot, it’s not summer. Though studded with fallen leaves, it’s not autumn. So perhaps I’ve judged it too harshly. Perhaps, September’s only a misfit, trying to find its place and its people. And isn’t that something we can all respect?
So, here’s to September and the limbos of life. Here’s to the grey spaces, between black and white.