This is not your house anymore

There was no chain link fence years ago, but you like to think you can hop it and come Home, smells returning and cracked pavement sealing. Shivering metal is singing as you swing longer legs into a yard you once parked the bluest bike in the neighborhood. Your feet touch down and the unfamiliar black paint peels away for the soft blue. A dog’s toenails click along linoleum and the plastic floor is familiar under bare feet. Shoes were too much for you, and without them, the cool dirt cradles the very sole of your feet. You remember the kitchen best, brightest down to the exact tone of the coffee grinder’s hum where your mother hovered most often. With a traveling salesman husband, she was essentially a single mother, our whole world. Even though she spoke of him constantly he was sometimes a ghost with eyes bright bright blue. A big glass sliding glass door looked into the backyard where a green patch was fenced in lovingly by the specter of a carpenter’s son. Bare feet left imprints on a not yet dry concrete walkway and when you place yours over them, they overwhelm them. The imprints are small enough to only stretch over the arch of your foot. The black begins to crawl back, the linoleum scratched now and with longer legs unwilling you clamber back across the wailing silver gate.

This is not your house anymore.