Sleep Water | Laura Maher

$ 7.00

These Nights Come

Boys are always dying in the summer months,
when nights—so short—elephant-walk past porches,
past people smoking outside houses, the people playing
pretend with lovers, pretending that it is not smoke
that yellows paperback books, but the weather, the books
folded open like lungs, and the people pretending to hate
the burn, the heat, but enjoying it, always standing outside
in the summer—when boys are dying, their bodies not found
until morning, lying, like lovers, curled around a tree—
these nights come
heavy like a burden, a bastard, but offer some relief—they must—
like prayer, calming the fear of almost-believing,
like a nighttime breeze, like hearing your own voice echo
in a church where you once fell to your knees—
funeral songs played by keyboards, the organs replaced
in all churches—it is summer—heavy coins on my eyes.