May 9, 2019

Home by Kim Malinowski

Sometimes the pioneer house, the plains, and farmland of North Dakota call me.
The homestead still stands with broken windows,
glimpse of the fullness it once possessed.
Generations of habitants, births, deaths,
collapse into ruins, into foundation, into history.
I pick up a few glass bottles to remember the place,
maybe once filled with milk or tonic,
a chipped teacup bringing with it earth.
I dust off my objects, now holding a fork.
My grandfather was born here.
Had he used this fork? 

My cousin, too far removed for me to understand,
digs out a piece of Mama Jensen’s lilac bush,
so that I can plant it, have a piece of it like the rest of the clan.
So I could belong to this place.
The place my grandfather left to lug a carpenter’s box.

What are the precise coordinates of home?
The piece of me collecting rubbish belongs here
with the ghosts, where tall grasses swallow the house up—a standing grave.

When will the shutters fall and the grass creep over?
Will the wind still carry the scent of lilac and whisper my name?

Kim Malinowski earned her B.A. from West Virginia University and her M.F.A. from American University. She  studies with The Writers Studio. Flutter Press published her chapbook "Death: A Love Story." Her work has appeared in War, Literature, and the ArtsEternal Haunted Sunshine, Souvenir, and others.

No comments:

Post a Comment