November 3, 2015

You Can Go Home Again - NaBloPoMo

This is the house we used to live in
This is the place I used to know
This is the house we used to live in
Where if I liked could always go


My second earliest memory is a tiled floor. Rich reds, burgundy and brown tiles, an inch wide each and three inches long. They overlapped and intertwined each other making a shiny patchwork of floor just inside the house’s entrance. From there, a Jacob’s ladder staircase that seemed too high, too majestic to see what was at the top.

It was 1974, back when you could buy a house with four bedrooms, a formal dining room and bathrooms enough to keep kids and adults alike from going at each other’s throats for $28,000.

Which is exactly what my parents did.

$28,000 for scenes and sounds permanently etched in my memory and retrievable at will. 

Echoes of Baptist hymns and selections from the Fred Waring songbook mom played on the living room’s upright piano.

Front steps where Zeus, the family dog would patiently wait for someone to let him back in after he’d taken himself for a walk.

My dad’s old-southern-man whistling religious songs from church as he did outdoor chores. No one can whistle like an old southern man.

Strained arguments, giggles, merciless teasing, and secrets between brothers and sisters.

Sweet scents of the blooming magnolia tree that's just a phantom now. 

Even though I’m married with a family of my own living in a different house in a different part of town, there will always be a corner of my heart that protects this house, the shiny patchwork floor and Jacob’s ladder… and will always call it home.

Despite the adage, you can go home again. 

 NaBloPoMo November 2015

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