Tomas Marcantonio

when summer came to brighton

she came wombling from devil's dyke

like a piece of wind

with a wicker hat and dress of 

billowing bees that went off 

suckling for nectar


her lips glistened

with the morning dew of the downs

her skin glazed with the salt 

of the breeze that carried

from the white cliffs of woodingdean


children flung their arms in the air 

and went rolling

green tumbleweeds into the valley

collecting grass tagalongs in their hair

giggling when she caressed their faces 

and left them for the sea


the boys on their blow-up boat

cracked open the warmed cans 

from that glorious hour on the pebbles

they tasted her salty splash when their 

upper lips kissed 

the back-flipped ring-pulls


she took the rays from the orange orb 

and spun them 

with her spider wings

attached them to the ripple crests

until they sparkled


at the shallows 

ankles of blue bone

and the toothpaste froth of the tide

came in to white screams and went out 

all peach-cheeked laughter

pale elbows perched on the pebbles 


and shook their heads


she hauled in the tide 

from threads of silk

a thousand-armed puppeteer

dragging green-black jungles of seaweed 

over the stones


at the arches she dropped hot honey

into plastic cups of gold

painting wet circles on picnic tables where

hens and stags and proud brightonborns 

tapped their feet 

and slapped red thighs for the band


she caught the marbles of rhythm 

and ballooned them

a glass blower

and they cacophonied under the sun


yachts escaped the marina walls

swans with their wings aloft 

at a river's yawning mouth

she filled their sails with a gentle breath 

and sent them bounding

gaily toward the piers 


sailors on deck saw the pillars of smoke

barbecues that blackened the pebbles 

and curtained the long promenade

sausages burnt on one side 

and burgers pink in the middle


she followed the sails to the piers

to conduct the sunset murmuration of the starlings

they swept over the skeleton pier

a mournful dance that 

breathed and pulsed 

the tail of an aimless comet


summer babes dropped their doughnuts to their sides to watch


then she cut the strings of her starling kites 

and let them loose

and she left summer to waltz 

its own caramel waltz 

from the horizon


summer had come to brighton

Tomas Marcantonio is a fiction writer from Brighton, England. He has been published in over a dozen journals and anthologies, most recently Soft Cartel, Schlock!, and X-R-A-Y. Tomas is currently based in Busan, South Korea, where he teaches English and writes whenever he can escape the classroom. You can connect with Tomas on Twitter @TJMarcantonio.