KYSO Flash
Knock-Your-Socks-Off Art and Literature
Issue 5: Spring 2016
Poem: 162 words

Dog Days

by Carolyn Miller
Late August, and the webworms build their gray clouds
in the trees. The dirt daubers’ nests grow beneath the eaves.
Some wasps are trapped in the upstairs bedrooms,
angry in the ceiling fixtures; waves of heat radiate
from the wood and plaster. Fans are whirring in each room,
and moisture beads the ice tea pitcher. These are the dog days, when
some dogs go crazy, staggering down the bubbled blacktop roads,
foam dripping from their mouths. This is the death of summer, with
its shriveled leaves and smell of grass scorching in the sun.
We sleep in the basement with the mold and scorpions. The rivers shrink.
A pale green scum films the surface of the ponds, and brushfires break out
on the hills. At night, they glow as if the hills had cracked open to reveal
their burning hearts, as if this is how the world will end, first
the smell of far-off smoke, then the high wild flames.

Carolyn Miller
Issue 5, Spring 2016

is a poet and painter living in San Francisco. She has published two books with Sixteen Rivers Press (After Cocteau and Light, Moving) as well as work in a number of journals, including The Gettysburg Review, The Southern Review, Prairie Schooner, and KYSO Flash.

More on the Web: By, About, and Beyond

A Warm Summer in San Francisco, a poem in Silver Birch Press (5 July 2013)

The World as It Is, a poem at Poetry Foundation

Two Poems + Commentary: “New Lines for Fortune Cookies” and “Swimming” in Serving House Journal (Issue 6, Fall 2012)

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