September: Bombs Away

by | Mixed Media

Artist’s statement: I always take my kids on a one-day adventure at the end of the summer. No particular destination, nothing fancy, just drive somewhere and see what we can find. It’s always a confusing ritual because while we’re exploring, time stands still but simultaneously we’re aware that time is running out for summertime adventure. Last summer we ended up in the great tourist-trap hamlet of Hell, Michigan. In the gift shop I found a cap bomb like I hadn’t seen since I was ten. I remembered throwing one of those up and down endlessly as a kid, no doubt annoying the neighborhood adults and dogs. I had to buy it. We spent the day wandering the putt-putt course, walking the river, the railroad tracks. Getting ice cream. It was a muggy day, but with a crispness that only occurs when summer is wheezing its last breaths. I happened to have a camera and by the time we got home from our annual bittersweet adventure, I had the piece I wanted to make pretty much written and edited in my head. It’s a reminder to do all the summer you can before the clock runs out.

About The Author


Writer and filmmaker Joseph Johnston’s prose, poetry, and video literature have appeared in Midwestern Gothic, Matador Review, Arcadia, Iron Horse Literary Review, and elsewhere. He resides in Michigan where he is working on a novel about the life cycle of telephone poles. Visit his website.