my father's house

my father's house bears change

these days

the voices bouncing

off the walls

are not those of my family


of strangers

taking the space

i once knew so well

they speak with West Virginia accents


and treat me as a stranger

there are few things left

in my father's house

to remind me of familial love

to comfort me in shared history

something has been transplanted

and another thing supplanted

my father's house which

once was also mine

is no longer even

my father's house.

douglas brent smith


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No One Expected Moses

  No One Expected Moses -- collage by douglas brent smith 4 August 1983