There are days you dream of the fields
just past the swimming pool on the edge of town.
The grains would wave on the hills
like the earth dreamt of being the ocean,
and in that moment where you hung in the air above the water,
the arc of your leap from the diving board having reached its apex,
your arms extended like an airplane’s wings,
your back arched,
your toes pointed behind you-
in that moment you stopped time and looked around,
memorizing the world from the highest point in town,
just above the lifeguard’s chair.
The dogs used to race rabbits into those fields,
lose them and come bounding out of
muddy spring sprouts,
summer high stalks,
brown leaves in harvested rows,
and snowy drifts
while you watched your breath hang in the early morning air,
like you could walk past your own exhalations.
In off months,
orange and yellow leaves would collect in the deep end of the drained pool,
squirrels would race across the concrete floor,
paying no heed to the painted lanes.
The birds would scold you for bringing the dogs past the pool in autumn,
hop along the peeling paint on the back of the benches outside the baby pool.
There was a horse,
there on what used to be the edge of town.
An old gray and white mare who was not very friendly,
but lived in a large fenced-in property near the swimming pool,
and the big blue bus barn,
and the football field.
October nights while you were falling asleep in your bunk bed,
you would hear the announcer from across town,
proclaiming the names of young giants.
They would tear down the crow’s nest twenty years later,
flatten the fields beyond the hill where the squat bathhouse sat like a fort,
and this year’s young giants will run and jump and tackle
where a golden retriever once chased pheasants and deer.
And you will dream of those hills,
those fields waving like land was liquid,
seeing the wind trace shapes across the corn,
the sky a dome of blue,
the moon pale and tiny—
reminding you of your own tiny paleness,
how you are a kernel of corn on South Dakota’s face,
and how you wave in the wind and look like the sea
under timeless heavens bigger than they have in the city.
And maybe you will sit next to the window,
dreaming of those fields like a dog at the door,
knowing the place you remember
must exist somewhere.
All rights reserved to Cole Sarar.