“Dirt House”

I always appreciate a nice, hot shower
the way you feel clean after
hot water pours over dirty skin
reminds me of a house I once lived in
the plumbing didn’t work
except for the shower, which
had enough water pressure
to feel as if someone was pissing on your head

there was a bucket for shit
one for piss
they sat, ironically
in the bathroom
door closed to prevent
unpleasant wafting of odor
but made showering terrible
as steam activated the smell
of every shit particle in the air

mice roamed within the walls
creating empires and dynastys
all beyond my human eyes
the scratching gave them away

spiders seemed to find their homes
within mine, in every corner,
on every wall
mouse shit filled the oven
made the food taste funny
fast food seemed more appealing

the ceiling was falling
I imagine it still is
slowly, weakening one rain at a time
bits of popcorn insulation littered the stained carpet
and in the kitchen
the floor was failing
sloped in one direction
and sunk in beneath my weight

bugs of any kind appeared
seemingly new species
yet undocumented
except maybe in
some diseased third-world locale

lead to
shallow breathing, a cough at night
there’s lead in that there wall paint
ate enough paint chips
from wooden crib
in another life, that perhaps
I was immune
or, perhaps it was there that
insanity finally took hold
and I, the witless victim
could not smell the decay of my own brain

dirt house, where
my grandmother died
where my son was born
my marriages ended
the house that killed me
another notch on a rotting porch rail
unimportant lives, documented by
painted shutters and squeaking doors
vengeance on those who let it slip
into its own death-rattle of inevitability

One day, I’ll return
drive by the old place
I think
I’d like to burn it down

© M. Black, 2016 All rights reserved.


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