Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Returning Home

You will suppose, stepping past the frame,
that love’s bond endures steadfast as oaken
doors -- your presence would oil some broken
hinge, opened, dog-eared, to a cherished time.
But twenty years of blood will fail to save
you guilt, or hesitate to tell you of
your import in a house you must always
part, and for the death of you could never face.

Still, you stand enduringly out of place,
propped, like luggage, against this stairwell niche:
that arch -- alleged to fit a coffin’s base --
would once accommodate your mortal strain,
bracing the box’s mass and bearer’s pain,
if only long enough to scratch an itch.