even the darkest nights have stars

in fact, that’s when they shine even brighter

and the ones that were invisible before – this is when the world first sees them glimmer

(but don’t you know, they’ve been shining on their own all along).

we aren’t left to fend for ourselves in the dark –

each night, we are tucked in with a translucent blanket of majesty – threaded with periwinkle-navy and deep blue,

glittered with layers and layers of frosted twinkles – if your hand could reach out to touch it, you’d move the stars.

you can’t beat the air here, especially after it’s rained – dew brings you an ice-cold brew (essence of tree bark, the red kind). night mixes it with cool. nostrils try to sip in summer’s glass, but the flavor always just lingers on the tip of the tongue – taste buds singing for more.

so you lay down, cold sidewalk beneath, and dream.

and you get up – and dance with your arms held high.

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You will never get anywhere

you actually want to go by walking in a straight line.

??

Much to your surprise, a beeline to the hot dog stand will only give you cancer. And was it worth it? Pushing over that kid with red baseball cap, tear-stained chubsicle face, soon-empty ice cream cone in hand? (9.8 seconds later…) Its sugary sphere now lactating on the summer’s hot sidewalk – done up by the kids on the corner with their pastel colored chalk – gripped by tiny sausage fingers (too many fish sticks in my opinion).

Ha. He’s crying now – the ice cream kid. and yet. You – you are laughing, grinning, overjoyed by your hot dog – dripping in red ketchup and Colonel Mustard – relishing its snug position in the bun before your yellowed marshmallow teeth “sink” into it. HA HA. Ha. Ha-ha….

You are actually a sphere. He’s a square – a tiny one at that. He’ll be a doctor. You’ll be his patient. He’ll roll you into his emergency room, stick a needle in you – and you’ll explode. Little bits flying past the crying widow – out the window – into the ketchup bin – outside at the hot dog stand.

She’ll take a spoon and put ketchup on her hot dog. Relish too. Thinking your little bit is a piece of pickle covered up in red – she’ll take a bite and enjoy it. (because she doesn’t know).

Moral of the story: zig. zag. to the salad stand. (don’t order any tomatoes).