Tuesday, April 14, 2009

NaPoWriMo #12: home

I'm still playing catch-up. When I read the prompt at Read Write Poem to write about where I came from, I decided to re-work a poem I wrote last year.


Goodbye 3517

I remember summer afternoons
picking sweet peas and blackberries
from the wild tangle of our alley
their pink and purple juices
running through my bones
walking blocks and blocks
to get to a saltwater swimming pool
and rocky kelp strewn beaches
and after dark stealthily climbing
a cherry tree reaching skinny legs
to span across to the top of our gazebo
soles of bare feet back arms legs
rubbed against rough shingled roof
as I stared up at moon and stars
to see what they held for me

I remember winter nights
when rain seeped into my bones
creeping from my room
back when it was still downstairs
still hung with home sewn
white curtains trimmed with eyelet
still wallpapered with orderly rows
of tiny orange flowers
the worn carpet and linoleum
reassuring my bare feet as I crept
to huddle over a kitchen vent
with warmth blowing up
inside my thin nightgown

I remember
summer spring winter and fall
being happiest alone
curled up with a book and my thoughts
in some solitary spot

five families have called
this house home
even when they didn’t want to
one: before dad left
two: after
three: us
four: them
five: uneasy union of us all

here it is: my last visit
the home I remember is long gone
and I am a stranger
in a house full of ghosts
new rugs and slick floors
piled high with so much sentimental debris
now waiting to be sorted, boxed
discarded, mourned
soon it will all be gone
someone else’s new home
covering a grave
(here lies my tender youth)
and those bones will rest at last.

2 comments:

...deb said...

Hey, you're really stepping up with the writing. Good for you.

I remember this poem from last year. I don't know the exact changes, but I like the poem very much (did then, too).

(We like the same old movies, too!)

aubrey said...

absolutely beautiful.