Terry Lucas

Summer of ’63

The Abajo Mountains, known locally as the Blue Mountains 
or just “The Blues,” is a small mountain range west of Monticello, Utah.

Camping halfway up Abajo Mountain,
one ear pressed to my cold air mattress, one
to a Delmonico, six-transistor
radio: fifty thousand watts of sound
—K-O-M-A, Oklahoma City—
Johnny Dark interrupts the Rhythm
of the Rain, telling me just what a fool
I’ve been with the announcement: “Marilyn
found dead in bed at home.” At twelve years old,
how could I have known about the pleasure
and the pain born conjoined in the body
Hollywood? Till death do them part. Outside
my bivouac tent, black air huddles closer
to nodding fire, hushes its wheezing voice
as earth’s shadow leans against canvas skin
pulled tight across thin ribs with ropes and stakes,
squeezing out the light like white noise filtered
from a song, waves beamed across a nation:
The only girl I cared about has gone
away—along with her she took my heart.