The Dead House

By J. T. Barbarese b. 1948
Fireplace blocked,
sealed with
cardboard, and taped.
Furniture trashed,
paneling smashed.
On the second floor

a rotting cat
furry and fey
in a nap
of  gore
glued flat

to a spot
on the floor,
in a frieze of decay,
up-staring, popeyed,

The screens I installed
belled out, belled in.
Every window
cracked, broken,
or forgotten, left open.
The in-gusting Atlantic

left smelling sick.
A shade softly crashed
on a sash,
finish nails and a bare
molly bolt fanfared
me from the gloom.

Google the address:
from outer space
it’s a bare green blot,
treeless, erased,
terns where we made love,
gulls where we fought.

Source: Poetry (April 2013).


This poem originally appeared in the April 2013 issue of Poetry magazine

April 2013
 J. T. Barbarese


J.T. Barbarese’s new book, Sweet Spot, was published this spring by Northwestern University Press.

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Living, Marriage & Companionship, Sorrow & Grieving, Love, Heartache & Loss

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

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