Various and Sundry Poetry

managing the return

Of course, everything has become a little less lovely, the bananas
ripening too quickly on the kitchen counter,
the pile of mail precipitous and wasteful,
the deck paint cracked and peeling.

Climbing the stairs, it is evident
a molting has taken place here, too, but it isn’t the same
at all. Instead, a fault line, a recession, the body of the house
gone soft. The air needing windows and more light.

The first morning is a rude awakening, an insult
of disproportion. Someone is demanding a refund,
upset with their breakfast order, screaming
from their car.

It continues. Urine trickling from planters,
Trashcans pregnant but neglected. An arrogant blaze of neon.
The city is graceless, unforgiving, full of ways
to go completely wrong and pay for it.

Love, too, has headed a little south,
kindness, forgiveness, awareness, thanks –
it turns out these were rafts to hold onto in the flood,
but here the dirt is parched and wanting.

So here’s what’s left: the moon,
her bittersweet face gazing from above,
something in her eyes saying,
Yes, I know.