[46]

/hōm/

(N) The place where one lives permanently, esp. as a member of a family or household.

My mother felts eggs at the kitchen table. Strands of wool wrap themselves around my tongue to make sweaters of my teeth. There is a father in the backyard who swings an axe at a log; you can hear the thump of in the bones of your feet. I think that father is mine, but sometimes I close my eyes and forget. On the ground, snow drifts sideways to write me a welcome letter home. It will be gone before the fire can crackle to light.

(Adj) Of or relating to the place where one lives: “your home address”.

I have lived seventy-two places in half as many years. Seventy-three if you count the year I crawled inside the apartment of your heart and died, only to be reborn as a larva. Your throat was sore for a week. When I evolve, I am only as big as what can be carried in one hand and a postage stamp. Pens are for love letters and crossword puzzles. I write my new address on your fingernail in pencil. There’s hardly room left for the news.

(Adv)
To the place where one lives: “what time did he get home last night?”.

See how the front porch windows reflect me wrong, covered in care and oil, like a bird of prey returning? “Next time I go home…” I begin and then forget which where that is. In the middle of the candy forest is a house built of legos and lincoln logs, with red and white piping and a potbellied stove that only cooks the slowest ones. A woman waves from the doorway. That is not my house. I’m the gingerbread girl.

(V) (of an animal) Return by instinct to its territory after leaving it: “geese homing to their summer nesting grounds”.

And here is what we know without me having to say it: I am all animal. This wing, this fat, this wild honk, this lack of homing instinct. Cumulus sounds like something soft and fuzzy: a woolen sweater, a yellowed fire. Vee has always been my favorite letter. What else is there to do but fly until my feet find perch? It’s not so much that I like the sky. It’s that I don’t know a better way to land.

~

Postscript:

Thinking about home and traveling, and this song by Edward Sharpe.

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This entry was published on February 15, 2012 at 8:49 pm and is filed under February, Poems, Seattle, Self-Portraits. Bookmark the permalink. Follow any comments here with the RSS feed for this post.

One thought on “[46]

  1. Poetry is a rare and beautiful thing. I loved this.

    My own musings on the nature of home were more prosaic:http://dtrasler.com/2010/12/10/the-house-i-grew-up-in/

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