Lynda Skeen

photo of swing under tree

Lynda Skeen lives in Ashland, Oregon. She has been published in a variety of journals, including boats against the current, ONE ART, The Halcyone Literary Review, North American Review, Lucid Stone, The Hyacinth Review, and Anti-Heroin Chic.

The Swing

for Sandy

Even 30 years later,
the memory of the swing
is still clear.
Long yellow and black plastic rope
looped around a worn board,
hung from a thick limb
of a barrel-chested oak.
The circles we’d swing in that
hidden patch of forest,
up and over the rusting cars
into views of the sunset…
the cool air scented with brown fall leaves…
We’d push each other to get started,
then let go,
taking turns watching each other soar.
It must have only lasted a couple of breathless months,
running to the swing after school.
And then someone burned the seat.
And then someone burned the rope.
And then the entire woods
were razed.

Such a normal chain of events.
Such normal loss.
Such normal memories
of arching fearlessly through the air,
flying in circles
until dark.