by Gillian Nevers

Dear one, do you know Lake Michigan
is considered tideless?

Scampering along the packed-sand shoreline,
did we even notice that the depth of icy water
slushing around our ankles stayed the same?

We played over wave-smoothed stones,
our parents, sitting at rough-hewn picnic tables,
drank Blatz beer, munched on raw peas that flew
from trucks on the road to Terry Andrae.
Did they care that we tore up the dunes?
Did they notice?

I don't remember finding shells—angel wing
limpet, mud shell, moon shell—like those
at the Jersey Shore. Do you?
I do remember Tuna salad sandwiches
and hard boiled eggs. Lakeflies.
Dragonflies. Skipping stones. Driftwood.
The long drive home in the back seat.
(I don't remember—I was asleep).
I do remember Daddy
lifting me from the car;
carrying me into the house.

Sister, what do you remember?

First appeared in Portage Magazine


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