There are two bites above my knee and they itch like all fuck. I know little beads of sweat now dot my nose like translucent freckles. I watch your skin bronzing in the sun. Your teeth—even the near back ones—are showing, the wet enamel just beaming in the bouncing light. The tendons on your neck pop. You look like a stereotype. You look like something from a magazine study. You say: “I stripped the screw. We ain’t going.” I sigh too loudly, sit in the sun, and scratch at the bites that may be from mosquitoes.
It’s the weather woman’s mantra: “and cooler by The Lake.”
It rolls off festival grounds into somewhere else,
we can’t see—
it is almost silent, summer time waves here are so muted.
Out there, the lines don’t meet, but meld into each other.
What do sunsets and sunrises mean
to us inlanders?
DeMisty D. Bellinger, a Wisconsin native, has an MFA from Southampton College and is now working on a PhD in English at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. In the past, she has volunteered as a reporter for Milwaukee’s Riverwest Currents, written columns for the Lincoln Journal Star, and contributed to Lincoln’s Star City Blog. Her fiction can be found in Diverse Voices Quarterly, LITSNACK, Wilderness House Literary Review, Touch: The Journal of Healing, SpringGun, The Monarch Review, and NAP. DeMisty enjoys reading and studying working class literature, women’s literature, and African-American literature.