Notes on Summer

Michael Gross

a. The eyelid opens the

Tupperware container,

and the women laugh at.

The placid lake, surfaced

in a cellophane of mosquitoes,

and the thoughts

of knife wounds leap out

at them like trout,

and the couch floats

quietly by, nylon-clad

legs arched over the edge

sinking lead fucks to

the floor, and over the

mountains comes a wind:

honking, headlights

flashing, and the idea

of windblasted faces or

tricked-out Mustangs

free-leap from the mind

to the surface, wrapped

bodies and angry strikes

to the trees at the water’s

edge, and past the

sphere of the cranium

into the radar view:

a heavy billow of wet

wet glances.




b. In the immediate moments

after the shot fired, a

mouse-sized yell hung

from the noose of the tongue,

a squirrel clung to

the side of your neck,

cheeks full of sayings said

before, never again,

you rusted out your finger

nails while the rain puddled


around the aperture of the

flame of a house, 3BR 2.5

BA, a zipper caught on

the granddaughter’s lip.

What were we doing there

and who were we kissing

to get the fat of the land

ground up and stored off

in our fingers, grain

elevators, imagining the

clouds stopped and turn

into plane tails pointing

away from our dusted eyelash

to the silvery tossed memory

en route to LAX, only to be

seen 100 times in makeup

projected off the brick

wall, 100 thousand dollars

pissed away on a habit

of putting your hand deep in

the ground & pulling

out a fistful of worms &

birdbeaks & mice, all

clamoring for their spot

on MTV: a collective forgetting.




c. The only time I saw my

mother was her holding

a sack of groceries in

her mind like thoughts,

one bag of chips for

every three times she

looked out from

the porch, behind the ripped

screen door of her filmed

over eyes and saw a

swarm of bees burrowing

in the neighborhood asphalt

and running the show of

Summertime, like kites

tossed against the side

of your head, the ears

hear the coming storm:

stings reanimating the face.




d. Snowstorm of exploded

eggshells behind the glass

fishtank eyes looking

around with the deep

piranha mouth pupils, she

wears winter like a

coat of rabbits screaming

in front of the fox of the

field, her chest exposed,

mounds of prairie dogs

barking out the feathery

birds of hair wildly sweeping

across the surface

of her skin, to & fro,

a spirit making the world

in her spitting image,

she sells her ribs at

a neighborhood garage

sale to the first man

able to store her safely

in his beard, a yell from

the great plains end at the

feet of the Great Range,

a howl of wind full of

eggs, a fishtank tips

and explodes her ideas

into a dozen hungry

piranhas eyeing the winter

rabbit, screaming at the

feathers of glass mouthing:

a storm full of pupils.



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