August Heat

It was the summer I was investigating
my desirability
in the typical foolish way of girls,
seeing how many boys I could get to want me.

You were living with that band, “Slut Magnet,”
an unfortunate name for you, the only girl.

We sat outside in the white plastic lawn chairs,
drinking mimosas to the shrieks
of the Latino kids next door,
the smack of their basketball against the pavement.

The orange trees and dead grass of Goleta stretched before us,
the day like a gulp of tepid water,

and the great ragged heart of August throbbed, slowed,
intoxicated by the heat.

Those were in the days when I would still do things
like take shots with the drummer in the kitchen
after everyone else had gone to bed,

and push everything off the dining room table
so that we could climb onto it and embrace
with the wild recklessness of the numb
that we called freedom.

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