September 15, 2015 by The Citron Review
by Dawn Corrigan
Circling the Pond
Winter lies on a pond circled by trees that taper to the sky, ending in nothing.
A brown and gray landscape interrupted only by the red stripes on the jogging suit of a boy.
He tails behind his troop, string dangling from his fingers—the thoughtful one.
“Hel-lo, boys,” thinks the woman near the water, but doesn’t say it.
The tree tops are window screens, through which the big white houses are visible.
On the pond, a swan, white and luxurious, barks complaints over the water.
I was with a man who thought I wanted little, since I never told him my desires. I was driving us into the country because he said he had something to show me.
He knew sinkholes, prairie, a small rotting shack in the woods. On this trip he discussed his usual subjects: bikes he’d crashed, the weather, how the land around us came to have its shape.
We often took such drives.
A crowd has gathered on the street. At the hub of the group stands one man. Beside him, a pile of 2x4s.
One at a time, he throws them into the sky. When they reach a certain height, they become music. Not just sound, but something visual, like the little notes drawn in comic strips to show someone is whistling.
The crowd grows. More people begin throwing wood into the air.
Soon a cloud of notes has formed above them, and as everyone’s face is turned up to the sky, a truly musical rain begins to fall.
A woman wanted to learn how to draw thunder down from the sky. She went to the library, where she read about the perfidy of clouds that fall in love with the ground, an attraction created by charges passing between them, until the yearning grows too strong, and with a flash the cloud dies.
She went outside and stared into the sky and willed a bolt to show before her eye, and raised her fist. But there was only a cat, and the Wain winking into view one star at a time; and the stars, or the cat, softly hissed.
Dawn Corrigan’s poetry and prose have appeared in a number of print and online journals, with work forthcoming from Feile-Festa and Mad Hatters’ Review. Her debut novel, an environmental mystery called Mitigating Circumstances was published by Five Star/Cengage in January 2014. She lives in Gulf Breeze, FL.