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A Midsummer's Horror Memory

by Michael Butkovich

A Midsummer's Horror Memory

that tiny house which once held grandma’s wonderful smells is no more

it only returns from time to time in faint limited fond touches of a garlicky memory

red chilies and green peppers soaked in olive oil, a fiesta blend that once was

Ben-gay on arms with homemade lily-weed ointment on legs, all topped off with Raid sprayed everywhere … and are now– no more

at five I was to find out just what it felt like to be broke-back

innocence stolen on a summers morning with cries that never did dry

who was I before that Domingo day ended who I was?

like the dead-end street that tiny house sat on, I too– ended there

who could have known a shared shower would change it all?

mommy is who should have known, but lied in her own denial of it all

below a city street Kress café, I blabbed all

a slap to the face was all the truth awarded me

Catholic school like the Hippies of the times, taught me to tell it like it was

but mother’s reality taught me differently

worse thing of all was the cutting of the strings … mother no longer wore an apron for me alone at five, alone still now … always seeking my stolen childhood summers’ memories

negativity drips upon my chin of bitter ill-gotten guidance they forced fed me daily

while the Gordo Sundae was sprinkled with forgiveness

rebellious eating became my signal cry of despair … but no one cared enough to notice

Frankenstein’s castle became my refuge

in the universal reality I found understanding on common graves of fantasy

like the black and white creature that he was, rejected by his own creator

relate I could, as my own womb-maker rejected me

Having not asked to be made then only to be abandoned … both Frankie and I … never understood why

now that tiny house is only a painful memory of the curse that follows me

from woman to woman, marriage to marriage my life’s lost loves of attempted -mangled bonds

were all twisted loves of a twisted soul, seeking always absolution through acceptance

like a broken toy a child cries over, never able to be truly replaced,

never forgetting the pain … this broken boy was equally ignored

No number of Griff’s burgers and fries on long Corpus fishing trips, nor

Godzilla movie passes could ever absolve the Sins of the past

Lennon’s touch of Lucy with red golden smoked hairs of Mary, nor

refine nasal blizzard blasts never numbed the agony of living

Daydreaming of another life … was all that was left, but even that was tainted with negativity

five dimensions sang of all the positive possibilities in the Summer of Peace and Love,

like both Charlies proved it was not to be

in that same hour, which belonged to the monster who bathed with me

he created the damaged new me -who I came to hate to be,

for the creature left me on that mid-summers day … only a childhood horror memory



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