When I return, I'll come in clapboard, stained chestnut, with lead-based paint on radiators, old-fashioned, and a little bit insane but sturdy to a fault. A spalting grain on punky myrtle and no refrigerator when I return. I'll come in clapboard, stained shake shingles skittering on skewed roof planes that snarl the corner lot like unpaid panders, old-fashioned and a little bitten, saying, "Leave our sightlines sharp. Let dormers train What angles water sheds." They congregate for when I return. I'll come in clapboard, stained with varnished truth: you ran me down. You caned old rockers with prefab splints, hack renovator refashioning me bit by bit, insane to strip as spilth fine bulrush. I'll maintain myself, then. There will be no mediators when I return. I'll come in clapboard. Stained, old-fashioned, I'll come a little bit insane.
From Bar Book: Poems and Otherwise. Copyright © 2010 by Julie Sheehan. Used with permission of W. W. Norton & Company.