My daughter wants a house
like the Apters’
she wants to come home
at night and sink down
into the warm brown
velour of dark
she wants to stretch
out on the rug like a cat
to sip tea
out of champagne glasses
she wants the people
in the photos
to claim her
to come down from the wall frames
and say yes,
you are ours now
you were meant
to sustain this
the fingerprints
could be yours
there are rings on the tables
from the soupbowls
just like your house,
you are ours.
My daughter wants a house
like the Apters’
she wants smokecurls
in the chimney
she wants sisters
who will let her be the oldest
she wants windows
that turn out to a world
that is different
and a piano that plays by itself
a tune
that is new
and unbroken
my daughter wants a house
like the Apters’.

By Alinda Dickinson Wasner

From Arrivals/Departures
-all rights reserved

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