Studies in Domesticity

A line of white towels in the wind.
A dog that is not my own.
‘I will paint the porch,’
my husband says, then changes
his mind. Why move, I wonder
when all is flux. Be still.
Like this beast by my side
running in his sleep.

White phlox dying in a blue vase.
I read the Greek myths in search of an old truth –
I began here by chance, oracular in my youth,
breathing Delphic fumes on to the page.
What terror. What hope. What frantic search
has led me to this impasse, mute –
white petals falling
on the polished floor.

The fan moves slowly above my head.
Summer revolving in heat and rain.
I said I would do it though scarce begun
while you build our house       I wait
for silence to descend –
the longed-for quiet of nap time
when our son was young, you at work,
and I alone listening to the wind.

White Phlox Photo by Michael Joyce

White Phlox
Photo by Michael Joyce