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Mark Sebring

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Flutterby by Ellen George, ISBN: 978-0-9831738-4-7, Sleepytown Press. Children's Illustrated Book..  
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Summer Nights
by Mark Sebring
Tuesday, June 30, 2015
Rated "PG" by the Author.
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Recent poems by Mark Sebring
•  Uno Sueño Que Importa
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Summer Nights

Here I am, sitting alone on my deck
in the middle of the night,
a glass of tequila in my hand,
staring at the moon
shining down through the clouds.
I'm listening to crickets
and air conditioners turning off and on,
wondering what's become of me.
What have I done with my life?
I used to have things I looked forward to,
things that I believed were really going to happen.
Nowadays, not so much.
These days I pretty much just get by.
I take a long drink from my glass
and savor the feeling as it goes to my head.
I hear thunder in the distance.
Somewhere out there a storm's a-brewing,
but it's still calm and dry here.
I am comfortable in my solitude,
at peace with the moon and the stars.
Ah, but I can tell that a hard rain's comin'.
A hard rain is gonna fall.
I'm comfortable with that as well.
My dreams are dying. I can feel them slipping away.
My dreams are dying. I can feel them slipping away.
I remember other summers
with sparklers and pop bottle rockets,
watermelon and home-made ice cream
at Grandma's house on the Fourth of July.
Playing softball in the front yard.
All of us together on the front porch
watching the fireworks at night.
Oh, the glorious summer nights.
Babe Ruth baseball at Memorial Park,
the smell of snow-cones and popcorn.
Camping out in the back yard
with my neighborhood friends.
Playing hide-and-seek in the dark.
Catching lightning bugs.
Telling ghost stories and dirty jokes
about things we didn't understand.
And other summers, later on,
when I thought that I was grown up:
Taking my best girl to the drive-in
and not seeing much of the show.
Oh, the glorious summer nights!
Where have all those summers gone?
Where does the time go?
(Those were different times
and I had different dreams then.
Those dreams are gone now,
and that's all right.)
My dreams are dying. I can feel them slipping away.
My dreams are dying. I can feel them slipping away.
I remember another hot summer night,
driving all over town, alone,
sometime after the rain had come and gone.
Driving, driving, driving,
not knowing where I was going.
Pools of neon color shining on the asphalt.
Steam rising from the hood of my car.
Somehow I ended up downtown.
Downtown, where everything was still alive.
Young people leaving bars and parties.
Couples holding hands, making eyes at each other.
Groups of people laughing and having a good time.
How I envy them. What am I doing here?
Why do I keep on driving? Why don't I just go home?
But something keeps pulling me on, prodding me,
drawing me onward toward the darkness;
the darkness and warmth
and sweetness of summer night.
A sickly sweet scent permeates the air, after the rain,
reminiscent of dead flowers and bubble gum.
Young girls in short skirts lurking on sidewalks
hoping and dreading that someone will pick them up.
I look but do not touch, and wonder
why any of this makes sense.
Does any of this make any sense?
(Sometimes, in the heat of passion,
we want things that we should not want.
And sometimes it's better for us
that dreams don't come true .)
My dreams are dying. I can feel them slipping away.
My dreams are dying. I can feel them slipping away.
So now, here I am again, sitting on my deck,
the only one at the party, basking in the moonlight,
with my memories, regrets, and a bottle of tequila,
wondering why I'm all alone on a glorious night like this.
I think maybe someday I'll go driving again,
somewhere out West.
Just driving, driving, driving,
not knowing where I'm going.
And I'll end up in some cheap motel somewhere
in the middle of nowhere, maybe Southern Utah,
with a bottle of Jack Daniels
and a dead cockroach on the floor,
thinking about throwing myself into the canyon.
Wouldn't that make a splash?
(Perhaps I've been gazing into the abyss for too long.)
And maybe someday I'll wake up in a dirty jail
somewhere out in Colorado, or San Francisco,
or Shanghai, or someplace like that,
and I'll realize that this has all been a dream.
Nothing but a dream. None of it was real.
And maybe, just maybe,
I'll eventually come to the conclusion
that all the hopes and dreams I hold so dear,
all of my crazy, crazy dreams
are just that.
And anything but what I can touch
in the present moment
is a dream.
My dreams are dying, but it's all right.
Merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily.
Life is but a dream.
Mark Sebring (2011)


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Reviewed by lois christensen
I do relate to these memories also, so alone do i sit out on the rocker on the porch, but not at night no more, not too safe either now a days. But i enjoyed reading this very much.
Reviewed by Ronald Hull
I noticed you wrote this in 2011. Yet it resonates well today, now that hot summer nights are upon us. For me, those days of random "going out" into the hot night with the window rolled down just breathing in the summer smells and observing it all, are gone, just like your dreams. But I still have my memories of them, and that is enough. I think I smell the popcorn now…

Reviewed by Jerry Bolton
Sometimes we must adjust to what life has given us, and what we have given back. Sometimes things just need to even out . . .
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