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The Dog Days of Summer

everything moves more slowly now—
the air too thick for clouds to make their course
still as the dragonflies suspended above grass

a fly sits on the windowsill, and I let him
stay there held against his hungry will
just as I sit under a fan that holds me in place

I turn the pages in my book, the only thing
that dares make a sound this late morning

and the fan spins above me its ineffective task
but it cannot be blamed for its cheap one-speed
existence of a life lived out in a rental property

and even the dog cannot be moved by a squirrel
on the fence, and the squirrel spreads its body
to full length along the rail under the leafy oak

How It Is

today is hot honey
dripping from the trees
spilling over rain gutters
sliding down my arms
and legs so that I cannot
move without great thought
intention of will attention
to my feet and hands


ice-blue lizards chill
on our fence under
the high-noon sun

give us that cool stare
with those cold-blooded
eyes then yawn so big

they could swallow
icebergs, glaciers,
islands, whole continents

Lisa Stice is a poet/mother/military spouse who received a BA in English literature from Mesa State College (now Colorado Mesa University) and an MFA in creative writing and literary arts from the University of Alaska Anchorage. While it is difficult to say where home is, she currently lives in North Carolina with her husband, daughter and dog. She is a Pushcart Prize nominee and the author of a poetry collection, Uniform (Aldrich Press, 2016). You can find out more about her and her publications at and


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