Call of Summer

By | 16 August 2019

A car passes by, its tires soft on the street
gliding through the pine-filled boardwalk,
hollow sounds meeting the ear as it wanders
through the air and lampposts glint with remembrance.
It is a summer night in a vacation city, and they are
whispering through the murmurs of an acacia
stretching its arms over the ballooning skirt of a girl
and the swish of a man’s shorts rubbing together,
passing by as the afternoon has passed. Moment to moment
they turn to each other as tires on the gravel, their voices
like car doors that slam at once, smarting like a hand
on the brake as the car parks—they are talking
about mundane things—dishes left to wash,
chores and laundry, but in their voices gather
the weight of their ghostly past. Over and over
it squeals silently like all the lights of a stoplight.
Seemingly with you but without you, I am
at once beholden to your promises one long ago day,
our heads turning to the other in angles
that indicated intimacy—but that was then.
Summer nights like these seem to never end,
but all has ended, yet still I turn to your voice
as a driver looks in the rearview for a glance
back at an incoming collision. The couple’s gone,
the waves are nearby, crashing with the opulence
of a chorus of seafoam. This is all that’s left
in the town you abandoned. I look up at the stars,
above the streetlights, above the monotone darkness,
and think I can walk along this road alone for miles.
All around me, I can see the intermingled hues,
and hear almost a comforting ring of rescue.

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