September Still Life

Sep 21, 2016

Yellow beach house, two decks, bay view

Total silence, not a sign of laughter or of children,

Windows closed, shades tightly drawn, shutting out sunlight,

Bikes, beach chairs neatly lined up in garage,

Garden hose a snaky coil no longer needed to wash sandy feet.

Clothesline, an empty rope devoid of brightly colored towels and swimsuits

Empty bedrooms, bare mattresses, no clothes strewn on chairs.

Kitchen floor swept clean – one renegade flip-flop wedged under stove.

Countertop bare, neither cluttered with half-full glasses nor empty plates.

Bulletin board message from nine-year-old:


With tears in my eyes, I drive away to the city.

Ellen Konwiser

Morristown, N.J., and Brighton Beach


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