on swelter days
when her sweat wets cushions
and dogs breathe tooth rot,
wild boars tusk furrows through her tulips
at the summer shack

she finds jarred fireflies on the steps
mostly dead…
children left them there

once a boy pulled the glow belly from a firefly
stuck it on her finger
will you marry me?


Bonnie Marshall

Artwork by Jinni Thomas


12 thoughts on “mid-summer

  1. my first reading of this poem lifted off the top of my head. i then had to get up, pour myself a glass of wine, and jump back in. a “mid-summer night’s dream” turns out to be a nightmare. the poem forces me to admit that we live in a world over which we have little control. first two stanzas: past tense — the last stanza: present. (the “past is prologue”.) as always i admire your poetic craft. for example, “wild boars tusk furrows through her tulips” delights with both rhyme and rhythm.

    1. Ah, then, you…you master poet…are an answer to a poet’s prayers. Whitman’s line, “catch somewhere, oh my soul” in “A Noiseless Patient Spider” is in my mind as I try to think how to thank you enough for your understanding of what I was about…even to the Mid-Summer Night’s Dream…. I’m deeply grateful. Smiles…

    1. Thank you, Sharon, for your insightful question. It’s very helpful to me when I learn how someone is receiving a poem. You sense the importance of the open-endedness to get to a deeper level, and that is so perceptive. Smile.

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