Friday, January 06, 2006

Wandering mind

Five rooms

In one back room of my mind, the air smells like
mothballs and celery and old mattresses, but it’s a
happy smell since I’m a child and my grandma
is making dinner from the fish we caught that day.

Another back room is filled with pale blue snow drifting
down in flakes the size of babies through a moonless night,
darkness and snow absorbing all sound except my breath.

There’s a door at the end of a long hallway deep inside
my mind, with a faceted glass doorknob and a worn brass lock.
I can see something bright through the keyhole, but can’t tell
what it is, and I always forget to bring the key.

One back room is crammed with books from floor to ceiling,
and when I pick up a book and open it I’m in another room without
the book but with a cup of smoky tea in my hand, looking through
an open window past red geraniums to a cobbled narrow street.

If I remember, I can find my way to a Palladian ballroom, white
with a smooth cherrywood floor, take off my sneakers and
slip-slide in my socks from one end of the room to the other.

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