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"The House on Union Street"

The house still looks 
the same, 
standing so pristinely
bordered by red brick
paving with the other
stately homes.

When I was young,
red geraniums were
always planted in
Mrs. Prickett's earthen
crock, and rambling roses
of assorted colors hid rust
that tarnished the ornate 
wrought iron fence.

In summer, the windows were
covered with louvered shutters,
giving the house a feeling
of being set apart from the heat
and the striped awnings
reminded me of pictures
I had seen of the homes of
wealthy people who played
croquet and drank lemonade
in the shade of flowering

I kissed him there,
in that house,
in that yard,
on that porch,
not as a lover, but like
a child seeking reasurrance
when they are not certain 
of being the beloved.

I married him there
and the seasons changed
into a time of winters 
that did not end.

The house on Union Street
is still the same,
and I return there
from time to time.
I cut some roses from
the fence, taking with
me souvenirs of times
that were, and remember
the others, 
that won't ever be again.

copyright April 4/01
Judith Labriola 

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