Ray Bradbury‘s masterpiece¬†Dandelion Wine takes place in the summer of 1928 in the fictional Green Town, Illinois (based on his hometown, Waukegan, Illinois, on the shore of Lake Michigan, about 40 miles north of Chicago).

While Bradbury departed this earth during the transit of Venus on June 5, 2012, he will live forever in his beautiful, brilliant, mind-bending work.

There is always a sad ache to summer — a feeling that everything will end, and you want to postpone the inevitable. No one expressed this better than Bradbury.

Let’s revel, bask, soak, and splash in the opening paragraph of Dandelion Wine:

It was a quiet morning, the town covered over with darkness and at ease in bed. Summer gathered in the weather, the wind had the proper touch, the breathing of the world was long and warm and slow. You had only to rise, lean from your window, and know that this indeed was the first real time of freedom and living; this was the first morning of summer.