Down by the Lake

Kids went down by the lake to get high,
the man-made lake where they say
someone died,
that is where kids went to get high.

Open the wrought iron gate.
Follow the path around. Sit in the grass
by the sycamores. The outline of
K building shows through the trees.

Cicada screams like drills at school
where you sat Indian style, head bowed.
If the world exploded, you wouldn’t know it.
Birds dissolve. The sky retreats.

Hours pass. It is quiet by the path. The screams
have ceased. Fireflies rise above the grass.
You raise your cotton head, shake off the sleep.
Look at the sky from on your knees.

Outside the gate your dinner waits,
no post-apocalyptic world. Three bedrooms,
one yours. A faded pink bedspread,
folded back, anticipates your return.

Ellen Birkett Morris is the author of Surrender (Finishing Line Press). Her poetry is forthcoming in Thin Air Magazine and has appeared in journals including The Clackamas Literary Review, Juked, The Bark, Alimentum, Qarrtsiluni, Gastronomica, and Inscape.
*Photo courtesy of David Wicks.
Explore Related Content
, ,