From Philosophy

“Welcome home” (V)

Ode to the photographs on the shelves
     on each side of your fireplace

 
The photographs of your family,
framed in little frames,
watch your life
from their place upon the shelves.

They are the reflections
of the different parts of you,
the stories of your life
woven into theirs.
They are stories that lead
to a captured moment in time,
and then go on
to another place and time.

They keep time past from becoming past,
and keep all times present in the present.

You move through your house
like moving through a reunion,
and each photo transports you
to a place beyond your place,
to another moment and path
branching from your center.

Your house, like your heart,
is where the times and places
of your life meet and mingle.

When I step into your home,
I start a journey through your heart.

“Welcome home” (IV)

Ode to the smell of microwaved egg in the morning
 
There is a morning aroma
without which
my overnight stay
is utterly incomplete,
a sweet fragrance
that fills the house,
an insistent odor that lingers
after the source
has succumbed,
after the seasoned dish
has been devoured.

It is the smell that announces
the dawn of a new day,
the perfume that permeates,
emanates from the kitchen,
it is the pungent blossom
I cannot help but inhale
when my love pushes a button
and microwaves an egg for breakfast.

Simple sustenance,
cooked in a small bowl
and consumed
as part of a simple repast,
life-giving edible
that feeds
the mind, body, and limbs
that I love to love,
essential essence
that becomes
the woman I adore,
the breathing being
I touch,
and who touches me.

Before rising,
in bed, half asleep,
I smell the aroma
drift through
the bedroom door,
and I relax,
I am calm and contented,
I’m at peace,
because I know
that my love will be well,
I know she’ll be satisfied
and sustained,
I know she’ll be nourished
for another day.

“Welcome home” (III)

Ode to the sound of the furnace in winter
 
As the snow piles up outside,
we lie in bed and talk.

A streetlight illuminates the flakes
that brighten the bedroom window.

We pull the covers to our chins
and turn our heads to the flakes.

The room beyond the covers
grows cold until a low rumble
adds its voice to our voice.

We snuggle even more warmly
into the covers and watch the flakes
shine through the window.

You turn to me and say,
“Lucky me, lucky you, lucky us!”

“Welcome home” (II)

Ode to the crown molding in your sunroom
 
I lie on the day bed in your sunroom
and gaze at the ceiling.
My eyes find and run the length
of the crown molding
atop the wall.
The flowing, smoothly sanded grooves,
the flawless paint,
and the perfectly cut angle
where two walls meet.

My eyes flow freely
from angle to angle
and from line to line,
savoring the sweep
and simplicity of shape,
the unblemished
lack of obstruction,
flowing
back and forth,
back and forth,
back and forth.

And the sun
through the western window
falls on the photographs
on the wall,
the photos of you,
your mother, and daughter,
and my eyes stray
from your photo
through the open door
to you,
at the table where you sit,
clicking keys,
sending signals
to warm the eyes and heart
of someone else clicking keys,
sending signals
from some other screen.

Then I fluff the pillow
behind my head
and let my eyes return
to the pleasure of the molding,
the rhythmic relaxation,
while my heart is warmed
by the sun,
the photographs,
and the certainty of the sound of you,
sending signals,
clicking keys of love,
in the next room.

“Welcome home” (I)

Ode to the loveseat
 
Yellow loveseat couch,
against the wall,
looking out
the living-room window,
the window that looks
down the tree-lined street
where neighbors do
their neighborhood things,
you wait for me
to sit in your lap,
or nap
with my head on one of your arms
and my feet on the other.
 
You are the bed
where my body rests
while I listen to my love
tell tales of family and friends,
or challenge my statements
with insights
and more hopeful points of view.
 
You are the softness
that supports me
as I gaze at the softness of my love,
curled in her chair,
swaddled in my guitar song,
drifting from attention to sleep.
 
Other times,
you hold us both in your arms
as we look out on the weather,
on the sun, and the rain, and the snow,
while the hours pass uncounted,
secure in the shelter
of shared presence.

“Open mind, open road” (III) Mexico

At 6:35 in the evening the train stopped in Culiacán. Ditto and Virginia looked out the open door of the freight car. Their car was at the back of the train and didn’t reach the platform. They could see the shadow of their car stretch across the dry sand to a set of tracks that diverged from their tracks and led to the freight yard. A short-haired, black dog was sniffing at the ties of the diverging tracks and scratching at the sand with his thin legs. A cool breeze descended with the declining day. The breeze dried the perspiration on Virginia’s neck and temples, and it tickled Ditto’s ears and snout. They continued to watch the dog digging between the ties, until they felt a jerk and heard a click when a new car was coupled to the train. A gust of warm air hit them in the door of their car before the train began to move, and the dog looked up. The station master came down from the platform and yelled something to the dog, and lifted his arm as if to throw something, and the dog ran toward the freight yard. A few minutes later the train rolled out of town. Ditto and Virginia watched the shadow of their car stretch and contract as it painted the mounds and small hills along the side of the tracks. The breeze created by the movement of the train swirled and filled the car, and cooled Ditto and Virginia standing in the open door.

“Open mind, open road” (II)

“Where should we go to start our travels?” said Ditto.

“There are some abandoned train cars outside of the station,” said Virginia, “they might give us some ideas.”

“Do you think they’ll mind if we board one of the empty cars?” said Ditto.

“There’s only one way to find out,” said Virginia.

“Now what?” said Virginia.

“Now,” said Ditto, “we begin to imagine.”

“Open mind, open road” (I)

“I heard someone say, ‘The road is the best teacher,'” said Virginia.

“What does that mean?” said Ditto.

It means,” said Virginia, “that traveling teaches more than any book or classroom.”

“Do you think that’s true?” said Ditto.

“I don’t know,” said Virginia, “I’ve never traveled.”

“Neither have I,” said Ditto, “my parents won’t let me travel on my own.”

“Neither will mine,” said Virginia.

“I suppose we could travel in our minds,” said Ditto.

“An imaginary trip to see what we could learn?” said Virginia.

“We could go anywhere,” said Ditto.

“Just imagine,” said Virginia.