You Call This Summer

More like a chicken bone tossed to a pigeon.
More like a half-portion of peanut butter slicked
in the jar we never throw out. I pedal
through birds in Tommy Thompson, all strong enough
to fly south soon – if I check the water quality
app it might tell me not to swim, so I don’t.
St Vladimir’s have brought in their picnic table,
though September is the best month Dad used to insist,
claiming this made summer less sad. Downtown,
the slaver has been covered with a tarp.
At the Spit I feel like a mayfly taking an afternoon nap,
and in the water, looking out, it’s Mediterranean,
I can’t see the discarded rebars behind me.
The dispensaries will soon outnumber the Ukrainian
churches in our neighborhood (Baptist, Gospel,
Orthodox, Catholic, Catholic). The carnival is over,
and from our eighth-floor window I watched you
move through the leftovers on Queen.
I shouted, The best is ahead of us again, or I would’ve.
Right now the lake’s warm, good as it gets.



Guy Elston is British and lives in Toronto. His poetry has been included by journals such as The Moth, The Honest Ulsterman, Anthropocene, Ink Sweat & Tears, Atrium and others. Twitter: @guy_elston