Summer Messiah
Mary Beth Hines

Woodpeckers riot
outside Josie’s window
early on Sunday morning. 

A mountain of pillows on her head,
she smothers them drum-by-drum
but they bang on, amp up the joy.

She groans and rolls, knees to chest,
feet bloody from dancing barefoot
with the boys on Bolton Street.

When a hermit thrush hijacks
the chorus outside, Josie flushes
with dawning relief.

Recalls how she shook
last night’s suitors, slipped
out a window, home.

Her bed sways in the thrush’s chant—
              Oh holy holy holy
              Ah purity purity
              Eeh sweetly sweetly

She licks her lips and adds a joyous
voice to the din—pitch-perfect
for a Saturday night spinning into Sunday.