in summer time

in the summer days are supposed to be longer

sun beaches shorts flip flops snow cones

& freedom from bells & books

adventure experiences long days spent dreaming

about becoming older wiser taller or just older

some summers swallow you hot sweaty trying

not to get lost in the sauce days no school lunch

hungry no one home roaming trouble easy to find

in the summer we meet at the center with the locked doors

we play in the yard learning to become

under the 100 year old trees in a shrinking neighborhood

that is no longer ours but we remember in the summer

that we can be anything go anywhere become what we want

the teacher relearns it every summer as she grows farther

away from the neighborhood that is no longer ours even

though she still comes in the summer to make us taller

to pray us living in the world becoming

she smiles she hugs she loves you can tell

we are safe as she tries her hardest to help us become

forces of nature unstoppable hard to kill easy to love

she has a high bar we jump towards the sky to reach it

she says we are able so we are

she says we are fierce so we are

she says we will have to be stronger than other children

but she wants us to remember we are children

so we play hard learn hard as she loves us into living

our dreams in the summer at the center with

the locked doors we learn to become

About Ayodele Nzinga, MFA, PhD

I create; therefore I am.
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