Photo by Maureen Sill, © 2008 (license:

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the summer that summer. the summer
I was prevented. each morning
that summer my eyes matted shut.
sleep my mother called what joined them.
warm water and a washcloth before
I could see. so much water that summer
and then the sun. that summer the fruit
ripened rapidly. the drone

that summer. a boyish summer. the summer
I took the boyish waters. like being
drowned that summer. that summer I practiced
pulling my t-shirt on like a boy (2 arms
neck) not a girl (neck 2 arms). that summer
my mother warned You’re getting too big
to jump down the stairs like that. all summer
I wore orange plaid toughskins
and my show me state shirt. each day
that summer I ate french toast for breakfast.
every noon that summer, a hot dog for lunch.
that summer I knocked myself out
jumping down the stairs and woke thinking
She cannot find me

here like this. that summer I watched
our great dane get opened up
by a bean truck. I never even saw her
mourned the driver then
she was just there. the summer
my already dead grandmother came to visit
only me. I saw a wolf lope through the corn
each dusk that summer. that summer
I threw rocks to make murders of crows

rise from the field, the summer I fell
in love with their flocking fell in love
with their love. after rain that summer
tiger shadows gathered in the waterway.
everything circled that summer
everything promising
you may come join us
whenever you like. that summer I read folded
in the apple tree. that whole summer
watched on high. all that sun that summer
and then the rain. the fruit ripened rapidly.
it seemed the summer that summer
was never done.