They Reappear in Some Vanished Summer

David Dodd Lee
| poetry


I know, because I’ve been there and seen it myself, where
he dragged each drawer out of his dresser into the backyard
and flung his clothes into an empty lot. What was I supposed
to do after that? I sat on a bus for a while. I looked at my
cigarette filter, the light brown seepage collected there. The
body is also a net, the mind—as if you could toss garbage
into a well for fifty years and not come to harm from it. His
worn out briefs stayed stuck to the cyclone fence. Does anyone
live an ordinary life? I don’t think so. My father, on his death-
bed, wrote on the back of an envelope offering cable TV
services from AT&T, “I have no further comment.” My mother
left the room in a huff. That was a while ago. Why couldn’t I
mostly remember just that—the winnowing of the details down
to a representational moment? After I got off the bus I watched
two plovers play catch-me-if-you-can in the surging Lake
Michigan surf. Insufferables, I thought. Running for the joy
of just running. That was my interpretation. I never even
considered the fact they were fleeing. You see what you need to see.

David Dodd Lee is a poet, fiction writer, painter, and collage artist. He is the author of ten books of poems, including one chapbook and two volumes of Ashbery erasure poems. He lives on the St. Joseph River near the Indiana-Michigan border.