I awaken to the sound of a rooster crowing,
the smell of fresh-brewed coffee.
I flash
back to my childhood. I am in the same
house. The same feelings flood
over me, take me back sixty years.

The Last Supper on the wall
Grandkids smile from the refrigerator door.

The house is still the same house.
At this table, the same table, in this kitchen,
I cut my quinceañera cake.

At this table in this house, the same house,
we sat talking after my father’s death,
after Bueli’s death,
after Tino’s death, and
important events—
weddings, births, trips.

The legs of the table sustain us still.
Furniture is necessary context
for life in and out of doors.

Pat the windowsill.
Cry a tear of joy or sadness
in this house. The same house.
The very same house.
Our home.

From Meditación Fronteriza: Poems of Love, Life, and Labor (The University of Arizona Press, 2019) by Norma Cantú. Copyright © 2019 by Norma Cantú. Used with the permission of the publisher and the author.