Today's poem is by Maria Mazziotti Gillan

The Strange House of the Past

Moving through the strange house
      of the past
            the black ink of midnight

what I want is dangerous

      the sound the wind makes,
          a portrait of the world
                in soft orange or blood red.

I dream my cousin teaches me
      how to balance in a kayak
            though I am terrified of water.

In the finished basement where
      I first made love, I learn now to tell
            a rose from a frog, how to break my heart.

Why does the world reek of death and violence?
      In the changing light of the past who
            we were rises up to confront us

We cannot smile or laugh,
      our faces crumple.
            What we want is too dangerous

            to hold or touch.

Copyright © 2013 Maria Mazziotti Gillan All rights reserved
from Ancestor's Song
Bordighera Press
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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