Skip navigation

John Abbott

The Way Summers Used To Be

All that cassette tape
unwound, cast aside on
sidewalks and train
tracks we walk on summer
days with nothing to do
but shield our eyes from
the reflected light and
continue to look for
the bottles and pop cans
that would buy us candy
or baseball cards.

Sometimes we'd find
a cassette relatively untouched
and we would rip out
the tape, string it along
behind us as we walked
as if it would never
run out, as if the summer
days would never end
and the sight of these
discarded items would always
be as common as the heat
of the midday sun.


John Abbott is a writer, musician, and English instructor who lives with his wife and daughter in Kalamazoo, Michigan. His poems and stories have appeared or are forthcoming in The Potomac Review, Georgetown Review, Midwestern Gothic, Arcadia, Underground Voices, Atticus Review, upstreet, Tipton Poetry Journal, and many others. He recently completed his first book of poems. For more information about his writing, please visit