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Apr 2015
Home is a red-shuttered house with over-
grown hosta plants, sold to a Chinese couple
whose translator loved our hummingbird
feeders and the way the house faced East.
We had a swimming pool, frog pond, two
pink bikes and matching helmets--mismatched
childhood memories nine years behind me--

we moved to a ranch, where I painted my room
the color soft, baby grass fighting through
wintergreen fertilizer, the kind my father
scattered over our front lawn, hoping to grow
something above the underground spring
flooding muddy, brown, saturated as we
became when my mother remembered her
locked-away childhood, my father broke
his back, my sister succumbed to self-blame,

and I cleaned up after it all. Our ranch holds
these events in its powder-blue walls, creaks
at night and wakes me from a dream repeating
nine times over--where I stand inside that red-
shuttered house, beside an eleven-year-old
me with honey hair bleached from too much
sunlight, speaking softly: you’re almost home.
Mel Harcum
Written by
Mel Harcum  Honesdale, PA
(Honesdale, PA)   
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