How August Works, or: The Seasons

Previously in this series: How to read a book.

This is the last week of August! Which means next week is the first week of May, so get ready. August 28th > May 5th, sunsets are going to start scrolling backwards to about 8:30pm but we’re also going to see the average high drop to about 78º, so make a note if you get the chance. August to May, harvest so jay, as they say here in New England, which obviously includes New York City: “Brother Jonathan’s wisdom tooth,” as they say up here in New England (of which New York City is a constituentive part, referring as they do to the falling of autumn leaves as Whittlings of Jonathan’s Jack-Knife, leaves which we might reasonably expect to fall four months from now, August turning into May about half of the time and proceeding generally into September the other half. August to September, time for September, as they say here in New York, New England. Old York is in Regular England; stands to reason, common sense, transitive property, New York ought to be in New England. But I’m getting away from myself – and away is the last place a New England man likes to be, ho ho Princeton.

May, or “Billy Yank’s Frock-Coat,” as it’s known around these parts (I myself was raised in the pocket of Dan’l Webster’s cheek), generally follows April and often experiences a post-August resurgence if we all get confused enough about what day it is. So summer fades back into spring before easing nice and gently into fall. Then there’s October, which lasts about four years or so, and after that is anyone’s guess.


Seasons, seasons, they are fun,

There’s enough for everyone.

Seasons, seasons, there are nine,

Sometimes it is wintertime.

Seasons, seasons, start with May,

Then forget St. Crispin’s Day.

Summer turns to spring again,

So say all the weather-men.

Summer II is cool and nice,

Metamorphic rocks are gneiss.

Next it’s time for Autumn I,

Stand still, then Marvell’s Fun Sun Run.

Lowells, Cabots, Lodges too,

All enjoy an oyster stew.

Next in seasons, here it comes:

Get ready — weather — time — and sun —

–John Greenleaf Whittier

[Image via Wikimedia Commons]