They’ve changed the house beyond all recognition,
cut down the conifers which screened the door,
dug up the flowers our fading mother planted,
paved over most of what was once a garden.
We imagine them imagining their mission
to solidify the air, adding a floor
and (we guess) an extra bathroom – bulkily mounted
on what used to be the garage.
Are those their children
slamming a door, and shouting? They’ll grow up here,
not sensing the vanished walls which are the firm
frontiers of our memory, or how
little by little, year after thoughtless year,
these recent bricks will build their past, to form
what they must lose, as we know we have, now.
First published in Snakeskin 234, November 2016