In Between Backwards and the Wild Forgotten

Last night I tried to find my way
back to Crescent Avenue. Only,
there were no roads—just rich, raw,
loamy earth. My landmark, the tall
green hedges with the small, utterly
oval, green leaves. I could see
where Valentina, never aging but always
old, her wiry, white hair wrapped up
in a scarf, would plant food in neat, long rows.
It wasn’t there, but
I imagined the pale, miniature donkey
that peaked from the bushes in perfect
stillness. Our house, had gone
from yellow to blue, and was now slapped
with paint that drip-dried to
a pollen color. Pina,
who was maybe my sister, or
my mother’s or Rose’s, hadn’t died—
I could tell there was still
light in her hazel eyes. So,

I dug with a spade, a trowel, my
bare hands, too. And I watched
ancient plants revive themselves
beneath tangles of weeds. I pulled
and pruned and sweated. And tried
to bring some order
to the wild forgotten. There
was no weather, no atmosphere
at all. Our family, as if
they hadn’t left us with
mere boxes of paper and cloth
and fading aromas, sat plainly
in the silver sedan that had managed
the journey without roads or air or regard
for time and space. I
could only be relieved. All
questions quieted themselves with
the opening of the car door.