And It Was Summer

by Esteban Rodriguez Arellano

One night,
as I smoked a cigar in my backyard,
the old lady from across the street
walked over with her pit bull
and complained about the smell.
“You smoke mucho marijuana,”
she said pointing at my Backwoods.
“It’s a cigar,” I explained.
“No,” she said, “You stop.”
“Listen, your dog barks all night long,
do I complain?”
“You stop,” she demanded.
I said, “I stop when he stops.
Whatever his name is.”
She said, “Doe no.”
“You don’t know his name,”
I asked.
She said, “Doe no.”
“Don’t know,” I asked again.
“Doe no,” she replied.
“Wait a minute, his name is Don't Know?”
“Doe no,” she said as her freaking dog
took a crapzilla on my lawn.
She gave me the bony bird,
and marched back to her fort.
There after, every morning
I’d find a steaming pile of dog shit in my yard.

One day,
I planted jalapenos in the enriched soil;
and when the plant was full,
I picked and gave them to the old lady.
It was summer and days were long:
bees buzzed the honeysuckles,
children played in the fields,
wives giggled like high school girls,
old men played cards,
and young men serenaded their sweethearts.
The old lady walked across the street with Don't Know
and brought ice cold horchata.
We sat by my garden and talked about the old country,
and the breeze made circlets of her hair,
and Don't Know barked at passersby,
and I smoked my Backwoods.

And it was summer and dreams were long,
and bees buzzed the honeysuckles,
and children played in the fields,
and we sat in my garden,
by the jalapeno plant,
and drank horchata
and let evening light
wash over us.

Esteban R Arellano's picture

Poet by circumstance...

Last updated March 04, 2017