Home is dragging twenty kilograms of a suitcase up a narrow staircase
in the middle of the night, with mum hissing at me:
“Shsh! Neighbours are long asleep.”
Home is farmers’ market open for me 6 days a week,
and the man from whom I always buy apples.
(He knows Rubins are my favourites).
Home is the irritating stink of smoke.
(And yet I still come back to it).
Home is walking down my empty street,
watching out for firecrackers and kids up to mischief.
Home is my favourite cup with a cow drawn on it,
and the cocoa I always drink from it.
Home is the concrete block of my old primary school,
and the benches that have never changed.
Home is the church I have not gone to in years,
and the hay scattered in the model manger around Christmastime.
Home is the stationary shop down the street where I buy pens and rubbers.
(I wonder how it’s still open).
Home is meeting school friends for a coffee and wondering
if we’re in the right place, because meeting friends for a coffee
is such a grown-up thing.
Home is the bridge and the panorama in the middle of the night.
Home is stacks of books that had brought me up,
and feeling fourteen when I read them again.