The Heat

by Zoe Bogart

When the heat comes, it falls

Just like a heavy tablecloth

Folding into little rivulets and sloppy waves.

But instead of landing on glossy wood

And billowing slightly under the chink of glass and china

Instead of rustling to the hum of pleasant conversation

The heat sinks into the rough, scarred road

Into the rough, scarred c


Into the rough, scarred people.

The heat pours into their throats and ears.

It fills their lungs with a smothering staleness.

The heat blots out the conscientiousness

That made billy pick up the litter

That kept tracy from slamming the door.

Under heat, the lightness is lethargy

The buckled-up discontent bursts

And the delicate brain-curves unravel.