The Heart of the House | Susan Marie Swanson
The heart of the house is the table where chattering kids
stir and slurp their chocolate milk.
The mind of the house
is its books—like the bike-repair manual
on the basement floor,
and the dinosaur book with torn pages,
a Shakespeare where an old phone bill
marks The Tempest.
Steps and stairs are the house’s plan for what comes next.
The locks are its fears.
The house has a good memory,
especially the floors,
and more bones than anyone can count—pencils,
spoons, toothbrushes, and such,
besides the lumber and nails.
Not flute, not faucet, not radio—but the breath
of the family asleep makes the music of the house.
The hope is a kite and string waiting in the dark closet.
Every source of light.
House Key | Susan Marie Swanson
Here is the key to the house.
In the house burns a light.
In that light rests a bed.
On that bed waits a book.
In that book flies a bird.
In that bird there is a song.
In that song rises the moon.
On the moon’s face shines the sun.
Sun in the moon,
moon in the song,
song in the bird,
bird in the book,
book on the bed,
bed in the light,
light in the house.
Here is the key to the sun.