“Indian Summer” by Beat Happening
I have some old boyfriends who occupy the same space in my brain as the arcade down on Atlantic Avenue in Virginia Beach, or the creek near my childhood home. I don’t know where the creek originated, but it ends at the wide mouth of the Elizabeth River, a mud-sucked, heron-stalked, crawfishy place of no great beauty but much romantic mystery. The arcade closed a decade ago. The creek is sluggish but alive. The boyfriends don’t talk to me now. I wonder, though, if they remember the things that I do: speeding down Shore Drive on a July night, windows down, looking for the ghost just beyond the roadside strand of trees; making rubbings of the tombstones in St. Paul’s churchyard; drinking illicit beers in the holy Hatteras nights. I danced to this song at my wedding—with my new husband, and with all my old ghosts. I don’t forget.
Lauren Ireland grew up in southern Maryland and coastal Virginia. She is a graduate of the MFA program for Poets and Writers at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst and an editor at Lungfull! Magazine. With Molly Dorozenski, she co-edits Ghostwriters of Delphi. She lives in Seattle.
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