It’s Springtime, Elise, and You’re Missing All of It
Not the expected robin, or the ragged deer
stepping from the woods
to lip the new green—
but rather the girls in bikinis who stand
in Tallahassee traffic, lifting Car Wash signs,
their pert behinds a greater glory
than pollen count, or
Boxing ring girls, sans spangles,
they leg in heels from corner to corner,
the culmination of suffragettes
and Betty Friedan, their every step
a violin’s reel in the orchestra
of the sunny day, a glare
that makes me lower my shades against it all.
You’d say it was a word like heartbreaking—
how in the coffee shop
the young man’s shirt is open just enough
to see a flash
of curling hair—
Either that or tasty—
Let me put it another way—
even though you’re not sitting here,
the bored policeman directs traffic,
the strolling dogs sniff from ass to ass,
the telephones still ring.
Rebecca Hazelton is currently the Jay C. and Ruth Hall Poetry Fellow at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Creative Writing Institute. She attended the University of Notre Dame for her MFA in poetry and recently completed her PhD at Florida State University. Her work has appeared in Conjunctions, Field, and Pleiades, among others.
“It’s Springtime, Elise, and You’re Missing All of It” appears in our Summer 2011 issue.