Hains Point

Sandra Beasley
| poetry


The old men chide each other to tee up quick, before the rain. I want to buy a fountain soda, sit on the porch, and eavesdrop. I want to buy a pitcher of beer. I walk the mini-green, swoops of turf and brick that have been here since 1931. The city assembled this spit over a dozen years from 19th-century dredgings. My dad detoured our Cadillac along the channel so we’d see The Awakening, five pieces that hinted at a giant body breaking ground to breathe. The Peace Garden’s funding never came through. The Navy enclosed four acres to build a steel shed, contents unknown, and The Awakening moved to Maryland. The sidewalk is swept with mucky silt and I’m getting mosquito-bit, watching ducks toddle and peck. On the far bank, National glimmers. One plane after another insists on liftoff as the storm eases across the river. The old men chide each other, Go on now. They give each other answers no man gives when a woman does the asking.

Sandra Beasley is the author of Made to Explode (forthcoming in 2021); Count the Waves; I Was the Jukebox (winner of the Barnard Women Poets Prize); Theories of Falling (winner of the New Issues Poetry Prize); and Don’t Kill the Birthday Girl: Tales from an Allergic Life, a disability memoir. She also edited Vinegar and Char: Verse from the Southern Foodways Alliance. She lives in Washington, D.C.

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