The Spaces that Whisper Home
I gaze out my balcony at terra cotta tiles
underneath the watchful stance of Orion.
I reminisce with a smile,
for these are the same style
as my grandparents’ house
thousands of miles away in Germany.
By the waterfront I oft arrive to roam,
watching the ferries as they float home
down the river flowing out to the sea.
There, the seagulls cry out to remind me
of childhood days spent on Galveston beach.
Here it is as if these spaces that whisper home
were just within my reach.
Our people passionately parade
down her pavement during all seasons
whether to protest, rejoice, or remember.
They dance in dazzling costumes with puppetry,
creating visions that transport me
to the joyous season of Mardi Gras
in my early Louisiana years.
Out on swamps of Mare Island,
where her shores are kissed by the bay,
you might find me wandering some day
around the ruins of the Naval base
across rusted railroad tracks
whose train whistles
are now only the songs of ghosts
dancing down dusty dirt trail ways
that wind through prairie grass
as I did in my Oklahoma youth.
Down at the Townhouse jams the band,
joining together in harmony,
weaving community together with a song,
as the melodies of camaraderie
burst forth out onto the street,
sparking memories so sweet
when the crowd sings along
to folk and country songs
just like at my synagogue
in the shadow of Mt. Tam.
For between the roar of cheering crowds
who might by chance hear some verse
in these calm moments I have found
that this space rekindles my heart,
whispering tales of the days of yore,
feeling as familiar in my soul
as each place that has come before,
and I know that I am home.
Like her flocks of migrating birds,
long may she soar!
The artwork and poetry will be on display at the McCune during the summer. The exhibit features work by several different local poets and artists.