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Suburban Return

— Philip Metres

Again, we turn down the familiar
             lane and its favoring ghosts. Each
house we’ve named after inhabitants
             now replaced by inhabitants

who themselves have moved on.
             Slight widening of a driveway.
Ash tree felled by lightning,
             now the memory of a tree

igniting the map of the mind. Sound
             of geese overhead, returning
to wherever geese return. Is there
             no place but the places we carry

with us? Everything is in love
             with weather, unattached to the
future. Inside, young versions of self
             still hang in frames, immune, closets

refuse to be cleared of the last
             century, and the ticking clock
every hour comes with the call
             of a bird whose name we believe

we know but can’t quite recall.


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