Backyard Trampoline

Michael Shaw

Where they taught me jumps,

somersaults, how to


back flip, front flip,

how to


keep from crying when you

fall off the edge, how to


lie to Mom about that

mark on your face.


Black thick straps

wove together into a basket for


the bunch of us, reaching down

to the dirt with each linty sock jump.


Where Tyler spent his time,

when he wasn’t pushing me over during


cul-de-sac catch or carving kill

into my neighbor’s back porch.


Where he pinned me to my shoulders

to teach me how to


react when you’re pinned

by your shoulders, how to


react when you’re slapped

while pinned by your shoulders, how to


react when your friend says

“I heard Ty beat you up”


after Wednesday night

church, how to


lie to Mom about that

mark on your face.

Fall, 2016 Issue

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