The teen girl’s dressed in a circle skirt
and a tight-fitting blouse. Rouged lips.
She’s on the front lawn, twirling
in a 30 inch hula hoop; it’s around her waist.
Her boyfriend is standing at the front
door of his father’s new 58’ Impala.
It’s a Cashmere Blue. The front grill, wide-
mouthed and glaring, the dual head lamps
vigilant, attentive. The deep, sculptured
braided back end, contorted in, with three
small taillights like multiple blinking eyes
beneath a wave-like dip, and into a fin.
On the radio: Carl Perkin’s, Blue Suede Shoes.
It’s September, and school’s begun.
The late summer trees express lush color.
Some leaves, like incidental derivations
of the color palette, burn into red, orange.
A small dog barks at the turn up of noise.
A cat in the bush squats low, circumspect.
It can feel in its hair something ambiguous.
Her father, the judge, looks pensively
from his half-drawn shades, suspicious.
Her mother, in the kitchen, cuts open
a watermelon with their sharpest knife.
Carelessly cuts her index finger pink-red.
Curses softly, like killing commie flies.
The United States explodes an Atomic
bomb, in a missile, in the South Pacific.
Ken Meisel is a poet and psychotherapist, a Pushcart Prize nominee and has been published in over 100 national magazines. Recent work is in Rattle, Midwestern Gothic, Muddy River Poetry Review, Firefly and Concho River Review. His most recent book is The Drunken Sweetheart at My Door (FutureCycle Press: 2015).