Living Proof

It was more than a house—Walls
of pine, exposed heartwood. A trellis
supporting vines and sticky globes
of fruit. The world beyond the garden
gate, glimpsed too from the windows:
little teacup, mountains forming 
a scalloped rim. Two lanterns lit 
the way at night. The way 
the doorbell would ring a kind 
of code to signal our arrivals.
Yerba buena, good herb, greening
the air by the porch. Ladders 
of bougainvillea climbing to the roof.
Ghosts that trailed in robes
through the halls, dropping grey
hairs and cigar ash as they passed; 
or furtive letters they wrote 
and slipped into pockets, before 
they left this world. Under the clothes-
line, you strung two blankets to make 
a tent. We sat  underneath it, shelling 
peas or snapping winged beans
in two—ink-edged and ruffled, 
a thing that grew in the hot 
sun as if from nothing. Bitter
gourd and spongy gourd, 
armored squash and spears
of okra—out of hardscrabble 
soil insisting on the truth of life.

One Reply to “Living Proof”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.