Talking to boys

by SK

Remember when those boys from high school finally grew tall
came back for summer holidays with stories
mostly about drinking, but often about girls
or older women, brazen
emboldened by experience, confessing teenage-long crushes
on you and your friends
using phrases like ‘out of my league’ and ‘punching above my weight’
sporting metaphors incongruous with their still-spindly arms
and narrow shoulders
your own awkward laugh?

Remember when you wanted to start a band, but everyone you knew
was a bass player, like you
and you’d given away your amp anyway after it proved to be
the heaviest thing you owned?

Remember, too, when the sun seemed to beam down on your life
for several days in a row
bright warm views and long evenings
of an active mind ticking off the last of things
last classes, last weeks, last pair of stockings, last days of boots
last time you let yourself dwell in a situation
that keeps you up at night, eyes open, you’d tell yourself, but still in the dark
last days of low-fog on morning hills
a hazy view diffusing street lamp glow
haunting hoot of morepork
last time your pen or mouth runs dry?

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