Originally posted 3/21/2014.
If I had been born a house,
I would have liked to have had
a family live inside me.
I’d have enjoyed my traditional interior
and thrilled to secrets and confidences
shared among loving members.
If by chance I’d been afflicted
with a family of abusers, perhaps a light
through one of my windows
might have illuminated a moment of pain
and changed a moment of rage
into one of remorse.
If I’d been born a workshop,
a small factory or a personal craft studio,
I’d have enjoyed the daily industry within,
the making of well-tooled items
by hand or with complex and elegant
machines. At night after all the workers
had returned to their homes
light from the moon would enter and caress
the worn surfaces, the works in progress,
the waiting benches yearning to be filled.
But I’m a man.
My interior is crowded with guts and stench.
I can’t take what goes on in there —
war and self-hatred, spilled bile
souring the slow flow
of my sludgy, sugary blood.
I want to believe
that there is a light in there —
something like family —
but the evidence suggests
of better lives
that could have sprung