It’s about
how seagulls drifted
over the tan sand
and stitched the sky

about a beach
and waves not too fierce
so when the inner tube
went flat we weren’t afraid

and just hung onto
that flat tire
as air left and water entered
until it sank

about how even
Liz and Marilyn
our feeblest swimmers
got back to shore

and how Marilyn
stretched out on the sand
and Liz sank down next to her
and how the rest of us collapsed

on the striped blankets
and lit up Luckies
and horsed around
as the seagulls circled

the end of summer.

EDITOR’S NOTE: This poem was selected from entries submitted to our Creative Challenge Series #2: Word Salad, which required that the words bolded in the text must be included. Read other Creative Challenge winners. To find out how to participate, go to Creative Challenges.


Iris Lee leads a writing workshop for theater professionals at The Actors Fund in New York City. Her book of poetry, URBAN BIRD LIFE, was published in 2010 by NYQuarterly Books. Her work has appeared in OccuPoetry, Epiphany, Haibun Today, Tanka Journal, and Marsh Hawk Review.


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