This is the official blog of Northern Arizona slam poet Christopher Fox Graham. Begun in 2002, and transferred to blogspot in 2006, FoxTheBlog has recorded more than 423,000 hits since 2009. This blog cover's Graham's poetry, the Arizona poetry slam community and offers tips for slam poets from sources around the Internet. Read CFG's full biography here. Looking for just that one poem? You know the one ... click here to find it.

Monday, July 18, 2011

I Can't Find Home

searching for home
somewhere at the end of this road
past the pulloffs
where asphalt turns to gravel
it's waiting
an open door
breezes through the windows

she's waiting on the sofa
reading leather-bound brilliance
heavy in weighty words
naked phrases stripped of pretensions
Aristophanes or Twain
Chomsky or Churchill
penciling notes in the margins
waiting for me to arrive
so we can discuss their meanings
over sandwiches or leftovers

but this road curves onward
I've misplaced the address
forgotten the landmarks
in my absence, she built a new mailbox
and forgot to inform me
so I keep moving,
shifting gears from second to third to fourth
take a wayward left at the pine trees
U-turn out of cul-de-sacs
drive slow past open windows
wondering if she'll wander past,
peeling the day's clothes over sore shoulders
aching for my warm hands

palms hollowed, craving her soles
pressing thumbs into toepads
circling, circling, circling the day away
while she reads me her favorite passages
something disproving omnipotence
the fragility of governments
the empires of men fading into dust
as though they never saw the end coming
thought how of all the civilizations
rising, conquering, declining, collapsing
they would somehow survive
the march of time

this road may be the one
I remember willow trees, somehow
the drops of leftover rain from leafy fingertips
the splash on windshield glass
wet fireworks beckoning my arrival
like a king come home from crusade
but none of the houses look familiar
the breeze smells unfamiliar
we've never walked these sidewalks after sunset
that, that I would remember

she makes a cup of tea
empties the French press
puts away my cup
I'll be too late
for caffeine tonight
she checks the kitchen clock
gazes once more out the window
for a pair of pickup truck headlights pulling in
walks barefoot down the hall
strips shirt from torso
jeans from hips,
and for a moment,
as left-hand heel brushes thigh,
imagines it's mine
removing the denim husk from her skin

night falls and shapes lose their structure
windows and open doors glimmer with
other people's dreams
found homes
lovers encased in embraces
like hers I once remembered
or have yet to feel
keep moving and if I can't find her
if no door looks like home
head back to the rented bedroom
where all my books wait undressed
naked to her gazes
tomorrow I'll try to find home again

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