September 10, 2014


Today I Am A Summer Field *

Today I am a summer field.  Put yourself inside me.  Watch what I do when the wind blows.  Thread through the stems that stream me.  Feel my skin from the sun.  Put your face against mine.  Let them melt-stick together.  Let them become one giant face.  A four-eyed, two-mouthed, mass of wrong.  An outside reflecting my in but at least that means we’re forever together.

In the summer field of me we can entwine; our freak-face head atop our bodies now forced to know one another as their own.  The warm dirt dusting our forms in blessing.

The field spreads wide, singing of childhood.  That’s why it is me.  That’s why I want you there.  You are the hand dropped down for me to hold.  To hold on to.

Oh, to be lifted apart from this field!

When we are together in the summer field, you will be bigger than me.  It’s your duty.  It’s my prayer. For once, a blockade comes for me.  Your mass of stone surrounding me as arms of a protective father might. 


There are those that don’t.  There are father’s arms that carry you through the corn.  So much corn that for a while you think the flapping of their leaves against your feet and face is a mass of green birds angry with your intrusion. When the corn finally ends and the birds abate there is the peace of a summer field.  It’s grasses as high as the corn.  Its still settles on you like baby’s breath. 

The father’s arms set you down because the father’s mouth tells you about the secrets you will find in this field.  Together.  You don’t know anything yet so you ask him where they are and he says, “We need to walk until we can’t see the corn anymore.  That’s where we will find them.”  

It’s a short walk, but you find the secrets.  A treasure trove.  And when you are carried back through the corn the birds’ wings are nothing at all and your father is humming a melody you will never be able to forget.

But in this summer field I have you.  And your arms have only carried me out of the corn.  And your mouth has never told promises of finding secrets. And when they command, “Show me on the doll where he touched you,” you will take that doll, you will touch that doll everywhere he did not.  With that action, forecasting a new weather. 

You will hand me the doll; a gift.  The chaste and unspoiled doll.  We will bury it in me. The soil will accept it and my field will sing a different childhood song.  A song of a new summer field, one that does not shelter what happens beneath its tall grasses, one that does not have mixed liquids soaked into its soil, one that releases instead of takes.  And one day, because of you, the father’s melody will finally be forgotten; in its place, this new song.


xTx has been published widely, both online and in print.

* Today I Am A Summer Field is a 2014 Editor's Favorite

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I came to this reading unarmed. I am destroyed. I have no other words.