Saturday, November 13, 2021

"Summers at Grandma's"

Day 13--"Summers at Grandma's"
This storyline came from a colleague I used to work with

Summers at Grandma’s

We liked to sleep outside during summers.
The house was too stuffy;
plus grownups prodded us to say things

we really didn’t want to say.
Our spot of evening comfort
was the old Model A Ford,

sitting out in the apple orchard.
For some reason, my Dad and Grandpa
dragged it out there, propped it up

on old cinder blocks, yanked the motor,
and then left it to rot like fallen apples in the fall.
But there was a mattress someone stuffed in it,

perhaps my brothers or cousins or even Grandpa.
For us, we didn’t really care as long as we could sleep out
beneath the apple trees, far from the farm house,

listen to the crickets, coyotes up on the Buttes,
and gurgling water Dad left on the alfalfa overnight.
My cousin and I giggled through half the night.

To this day, I don’t remember a smidgin
of the conversation, n’er a line from the dark.
But I do remember the grasses

swishing against the side of the rusted car,
loons over on the river, rustling of things
in the orchard, and the deep breathing of my cousin.

Once she was asleep, I just lay there,
left arm resting on my forehead, soaking it in,
hoping, just hoping that I wouldn’t grow up,

wouldn’t have to leave the old Ford,
wouldn’t have to leave home,
the comforts of crickets and nightcrawlers

seeping through the holes
on the freshly watered lawn, stretching far
to find a mate and clinging until dawn.

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