All the Places of Waking

photo-1422433555807-2559a27433bd

Yesterday afternoon, I woke up from a nap
looked out the skylight and saw blue
with wisps of white

Yesterday afternoon, I woke up from a nap
looked out the skylight and saw blue
with wisps of white
then out the two south-facing windows
to the far tree by mean neighbor Jim’s house
with its green leaves coming into fullness

Yesterday afternoon, I woke up from a nap
looked out the skylight and saw blue
with wisps of white
then out the two south-facing windows
to the far tree by mean neighbor Jim’s house
with its green leaves coming into fullness
then out the three east-facing bay windows
to the far tree in the yard where students
party and play volleyball and drink
from red solo cups in the summer

This is the room
I thought
where I’m waking up from an afternoon nap
This is home
home now
home for now

Then my thoughts drifted back and back
to the other rooms and homes where I woke up
from naps over the years
and though I often think I have a terrible memory
when I thought of the rooms where I woke up
I could picture so many of them
and how each one was home

Do I tell you the addresses
or what blankets were on the beds
or which direction the windows faced
or what color paint was on the walls
whether there were shades or drapes or blinds
dark or direct line of sun
rotten window frame
or new windows
rent or own
stay or go
what of these would you like to know
and which should I say was home?

My mind jumps around from each to each
rather than traveling methodically back
and back
no wonder I am anxious
and so as I woke yesterday afternoon I stayed in bed
a while looking at those two faraway trees
not the closer-up branches nearer to the house
this yellow house this house with two apartments
ours on the second floor
and an attic
filled with other people’s old boxes broken down
and lamps that may or may not work
as I woke I traveled a little bit in line
through time
glad for the quiet
glad for the slow

5 Eames Pl
559 Pulpit Hill Rd
38 Bilodeau Ct
Clymer St don’t remember the number
38 Bilodeau Ct
256 S. Winooski Ave
Summer St don’t remember the number
S. 4th Ave.
Davis St don’t remember the number
Lessey St on and off
Mexico there were two rooms
W. 78th St.
A Russian orphanage
W. 116th St.
Claremont Ave.
Blocked out Claremont dorm address completely
and 57 Harkness Rd
378 Crescent St
130 Crescent St first memory that quilt hanging on the wall by the stairs

Can that be right
Were these the homes
no no
none of these were home
I kept moving
and I’m still here
but yes, these were
all the places of waking

**

The month-long poetry party that April participants have called “nourishing,” “enriching,” “life-changing,” “sacred,” “beautiful,” “best four consecutive weeks ever,” and “most amazing writing experience that I have ever been a part of” is happening again in July! Just $28 and all are welcome: bit.ly/1qg583L

2 thoughts on “All the Places of Waking

  1. melibelleintokyo says:

    Oh, this is so so good, so so rich and detailed and just enough vague. :) all the places we’ve woken and lived—love each line so very much, especially the whole paragraph:
    Do I tell you the addresses
    or what blankets were on the beds…
    …what of these would you like to know
    and which should I say was home?

    What a prompt this poem is for me and many, many others, surely. Thank you for this true gem.

    Liked by 1 person

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