Moving

How do you weigh a house?
The bricks and mortar, tiles and chimneys?
No doubt those guards are weighty.
Surely include the landscaped garden,
its drooping flowers,
and heavy seed heads?
The shrubs, the herbs in pots?
The ponds?
The lolly stick crosses of long missed pets?

The contents are substantial.
Soft sofas and chairs
Imprinted with cosy evenings,
tables laden with feasts,
wardrobes full of outdated fashion,
beds crumpled with comfortable passion.

Oh, and the books. The shelves,
and shelves, of books.

How do you weigh a house,
where thoughts expanded,
where children left their giggles in corners,
where the halls still echo with the stamps
and slamming doors of angry love?
Where images of daily living in the living room
never fade?

A house where you can still find pine needles
In the carpets of Christmas pasts,
and there are still stars on the ceiling,
stuck there on a little girl’s whim.
Where hugs and waves and tears
tarnished the front door
after you said ‘I’ll be back soon’.

How do you weigh a house
that is at once so empty
and yet
so full?