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Sunday, March 20, 2011

Uninvited

I heard footsteps walking up the path to my house
But I had sent no invitations
I had made no appointments
No welcome mat in front of my door

Then a delicate knock on unstained oak
and a silhouette against the frosted sidelights
She had no way of knowing anyone was home
No lights, no sound, mailbox overflowing with postcards

Her frailty calmed my unease
What danger could she possibly pose?
I unlatched the deadbolt, removed the chain
Cracked the door and let her inside

She said she's driven by this house for years
always wondering what it was like inside
finally worked up the courage to knock
Grateful to find someone inside

I hadn't wanted/expected company
But still I said nothing
as she walked through the first floor
and began to turn on all the lights

She seemed to know her way around
Removing two mugs from the pine hutch
and brewed coffee for me, tea for her
as we sat on opposite ends of my couch

Obviously incapable of doing any harm
to a calloused, caustic man like me
I didn't thank her for her warmth
But I didn't latch the door when she left

Afterwards, she came and went as she pleased
sometimes I was home, other times not
Though aware of one unspoken rule
Make yourself at home, but respect locked doors

My bedroom, the basement, the garage
All else was hers to explore, to wander
For which she appeared to be content
Even when I wasn't there to police

But then I arrived home, worn & humbled
Things seemed slightly out of place
my nightstand, my wine cellar, my keys
She lied and said it wasn't her

I didn't invite her in my home after that

3 comments:

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bluemountainmama said...
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