Israeli Summer by Janine Rich

By Wasafiri Editor on February 28, 2017 in Poetry

Kaitz Israeli (Israeli Summer)

-was the name of the movie marathon

playing on yes.vod that summer

The trailer played     constant

nostalgic music droning over images of

young, dark haired actresses.


The heat was numbing the

kind that eats you from the inside out

but on the screen

they were cool glass unbothered

and the little tzeva adom would come pinging up

at the bottom of the screen

resting at the waists of the actors floating calm the dead sea-


Alarm in Ashkelon

And then

Alarm in Be’er Sheva.


And when the wailing sirens

finally climbed into our window

we peeled ourselves off

the lightly salted couch       moved into the hallway

seeking structural solidity

our bare feet red toenails

thrown up against the wall

legs cooled on linoleum.


In the beginning it thrilled us

this savage delightful violence

Now we do not meet each other’s eyes.

-you are so beautiful when you’re scared-

and we both know you

not afraid of the rocket softly falling miles above

but afraid of my guilt


We knew it would end

knew we would walk back to the couch and

return to our Israeli summer.

You taught me if we did not change the station

we were safe

Janine is a writer, student and aspiring optimist with absolutely no idea how to write a biographical statement. She currently lives in Istanbul.