Thursday, March 12, 2015

Finding Home: Other Voices

I'm pleased to launch Finding Home: Other Voices, a platform for guest writers to ponder the question: What is home?

To kick off this Thursday series, I know you'll enjoy the work of poet, playwright and author Pamela Hobart Carter.


Only house our children knew, where they were raised,
(only children raised in our old house)—waits to be razed.
Mirror-mantel with mottled green tile will grace
another house. Men will salvage and scavenge
her wood, her radiators. Men will flatten
her asbestos siding, her lath, her plaster.
Men will dig where Edna has stood one hundred
and eleven years. I demark the raising
of my children, their chalk hopscotch on front walk,
their slides in shorts down her grass as if on sleds
in snow, with orange cones. Men cannot raze games:
their hide-and-seek, their chase, their splendid stair-ball
invented for her carpeted risers, nor
careenings on her bannister. They cannot
erase images, the house we added to—
dark built-ins for our books, pale green tiled shower,
closets where she had few, fresh elegant paint,
and a garden we raised in borroweds and blues.
Whetherbe built two yellow quartermasters,
one, at his fort, and ours, on the quiet street.
Ours shimmied from her central axis, windows
skipped a beat, yardstick slipped: aging dowager,
misapplied lipstick sitting crooked across
her smile, unphased. We sold her to be razed.

Seattle resident Pamela Hobart Carter grew up in Montreal, Quebec. A geologist by training, Carter has taught everything from preschool to science pedagogy. She practices timed writing with two Seattle groups. Recently Carter began to wield poetry for the purpose of eliminating hunger.
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Kit Bakke said...

Oh, sigh, this is the story of Seattle these days. Quirky old wooden houses being flattened and replaced by hardiboard boxes. We can only hope that new families will create new memories in them, soften the edges, stain the surfaces...

Mindy Halleck said...

Wow! the things one learns, science pedagogy! I had no idea. Nice post. Mindy

arleen said...

Thank you for reading and sharing your comments, Kit and Mindy!