Monday, February 7, 2011

Building on 2nd.

Last year we used to say this house was haunted
Before he and I knew the names of the streets, we got lost in what is now our town-
Or at least my town.
We used to look up at the eerie windows and the creaking staircase
Trailing from the back of the building
We saw its widow’s walk, we saw its chipped paint and old door
And the dark hall and narrow stairwell
Behind the bruised number etched into the glass
And even when he left I walked past that house
(from the library, from downtown, from down the street)
And noted a thin white stump, jutting from the ground like a human limb

Tonight there was snow and there was a train whistling
Whistling so loud I could harmonize under my breath
Taking the sound as the tonic and walking past house after house
Avoiding the usual streets, I turned down this one and ran into it
Creaking and gray and darker with night it leaned down at me and the sidewalk
I glanced into its shadowy back windows and then back at my feet
And looking up again, noticed a light, glowing from an upper room
Saying, Someone lives here, and it isn’t a ghost, and it isn’t a murderer,

But be glad it isn’t you.

Turning the corner,
I couldn’t help but turn my head to see the silhouette of the long staircase.
A mother stepped from the door of the next house and called a name
And I hurried home.

1 comment:

  1. Wow, this is pretty good. I like how much it says without saying being explicit.