It’s clear what matters even if a pain:
Brick cocktail dwelling designed for three.
Inside stippled walls a small boy laughs,
And golden fish swim and flowers grow.
I say it’s a shame there’s no great hand
To move it to someplace that’s better,
Its pebbledash surface carried off,
This nonchalant charm that’s bewitched you.
But what if a bullet comes inside?
Will picturesque masonry matter?
Does your blood in these timbers hold firm?
Does your sweat and your pain reign supreme?
It’s clear what matters even if hard.
I’ll, too, love the whimsical Tudor.
We’ll stay, for now, at fortune’s mercy,
Her haphazard gifts like this brickwork.
(Appeared in UMSL LitMag, 1998)