a place—Vic Nogay

a place by the canal sells frozen custard.
you sit in an old canoe,
washed ashore decades before,
and lick your drips
while cicadas sing
and fireflies hang in the humidity—
a summer snow globe.

you’ve heard the stories of the kids who’ve fallen in,
and you’re careful not to be reckless,
but some days you inch down
the concrete wall to find them.
you shed your shoes and rest
just the soles of your bare feet
on the surface of the water,
and call,
like magnets,
the pieces of their bodies logged in water’s memory
to you.

when someone asks you cheekily: do you believe in ghosts?
you flinch because you do.

Vic Nogay is a proud Ohioan, writing to explore her traumas and misremembrances. Her work appears or is forthcoming in Lost Balloon, Emerge Literary Journal, perhappened, Versification, Ellipsis Zine, and others. She tweets @vicnogay. Read more: linktr.ee/vicnogay.

photo by Chris de Tempe (via unsplash)