The Big House

By Derek Frazier

Cheap sheets and
big dreams can’t keep you warm.

Neither can a three-page love song.

So I’ll work through the days and nights,
trying to keep bills off the table,
so we can live in comfort.
You might say that I’m working too hard,
that it’ll be the death of me.
To that I’ll say:

“One of these days
I’m going to buy you a big house
and it will have a wrap-around porch,
a massive garden blossoming under
blue gartered windows, a rope swing
and a large picnic table
with homemade apple pies, and long green grass
where our kids can run.
They’ll pick wild herbs and read
books under the shadows of the tall
pine trees.
They’ll laugh and share smiles
while we watch from the shade,
drinking cherry wine.

We will put it on a hill
that slopes down to town.
Growing by the front door is
an apple tree where we will stretch
a quilt under the stars and watch Venus flirt with Mars.
The city won’t be able to reach us.
We will lose them in the dust of our long
dirt road, all those smells and sights and sounds
of the metropolis.

And when nightfall finally comes
we will push my grandmother’s chair,
the old coffee table, and a hand-me-down couch
against the living room walls.
So we can dance
beside our night light shadows,

under the roof of our home.”

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