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Lexington Poetry Month

june 1



I was a teenager again

or maybe it was for the first time,

because in every other summer I’ve just been

a kid.

It is the first day of our last summer,

and we realize we can neither call ourselves

high schoolers, nor college kids,

and I say,

this is the freest we’ll ever be.

Here are

the few of us

on this sweetly humid day,

collapsed under the shade

of the trees that have grown with me

for almost eighteen years.

Left with sticky skin

and calloused feet,

we lay our heads in each other’s laps,

feeling the warmth of our bodies

and of the honey sky that wraps us up like a blanket,

protecting us from the thought of tomorrow,

allowing us to enjoy

the feeling of being label-less

and limitless;

of not owing anything to anyone,

if only for one summer.

If this is the only summer

I’ve got left

to be a teenager,

and the twenty-five days I have left

before I leave that word behind me;

before I owe the world anything at all,


I plan to be

the freest I’ll ever be.

6 responses to “june 1”

  1. Katie Cross says:

    What a feeling you evoke here! Great descriptive lines as well: “sticky skin / and calloused feet”; “the honey sky that wraps us up like a blanket”. The sounds in “label-less / and limitless” work well, too.

    I don’t want to speak for your future self, but I bet this’ll be a lovely poem to return to as years pass. 🙂

    • rebecca turney says:

      Thank you! Those lines are my favorite, too 🙂 I hadn’t even thought about that, but it’ll be nice to return to this poem in a totally different stage of life

  2. I too love the feeling this poem provides. The great journey of high school is over, with it the structure of grade school, making such a magical ending before the transition to college. Certainly a time to cherish and live life to the fullest!

  3. HB Elam says:

    Exist in every moment that you have, because those of us that didn’t often find ourselves chasing that feeling we missed the first time around. Great poem, thank you for sharing it.

    • rebecca turney says:

      I’m definitely a live-in-the-present kind of gal, so I’ll be doing my best cherish it all. Thank you 🙂

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