those pictures of the inside of
people's houses, little apartments as if the
cameras were bearing down on
a crime scene:
souvenirs from the World's Fair 1939
too many polka dot dresses in the closet;
pick just one.
why don't we go all hog and just
get a judge and jury in there.
maybe the Supreme Court
right there in the living room
with all those magazine pathways.
the New Year's Eve confetti.
Postcards! they'll shriek.
-the viewers at home lap it up.
you keep postcards? salt water taffy?
helping themselves to the candy
from last Christmas;
closeups on the mantlepiece dust...
when I was young house guests were told
by their mothers: bring something with you:
you know, special soaps, a little bouquet of flowers
a teacake. be nice at the party.
don't overstay your welcome.
help wash up.
nowdays they come to visit:
simplify! they say; leading the way
with a smile and a lot of energy.
The trucks roll up, early onset,
the bric a brac boxed goes out.
burglars do the same.
let the healing begin they murmur
on their way out the door
with your stuff.
mary angela douglas 26 march 2016