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50 Years of Home

(Written upon the sale of my childhood home)

The nearly empty rooms echo with the sounds

of an idyllic childhood,

the kind risking extinction in today's overscheduled and

overprotected adult-driven world.

The memories of yesteryear flood my senses,

overwhelming my heart and overflowing my tear ducts.

My mind races immediately to my joyful child buried within,

and I am literally caught off guard by the deluging images

of a home made perfect with family, love, and forgiveness.

Unscheduled and unencumbered,

we were free to paint our childhood home with 

the colors of outdoors and backyard whiffle ball games,

homemade tents and junk food, candy filled front porch "campouts,"

family game nights and TV shows watched together,

club houses, cubby holes, and hide and seek.

Shared bedrooms, giggles, and hushed whispers,

Secrets, conspiracies, and I didn’t do it,

Holidays, birthdays, and family dinners,

Loud voices, competitions, and traditions.

Neighbors, friends, and adopted strays,

Animals rescued, lost, and sent beyond,

Helping others, chores, and doing more than asked,

Shared work, shared time, shared joy.

Porch swings, serious talks, the birds and the bees,

First dates, first kisses, and broken curfews,

Homework, hard work, and umpteen jobs,

Bubbles burst, innocence lost, hearts broken and mended.

Love, responsibility, and choice,

Family meetings, closed doors, and private talks,

Truth, consequence, and lessons learned,

Understanding, compassion, and second chances.

I must now walk away and let go of this sacred space,

my heart’s home for nearly 50 years,

but first let me memorize this feeling

  of gratitude,

           of awareness,

                    of appreciation,

                             of completeness,

                                              of a canvas daubed in

hues of family, faith, love, friendship, and forgiveness.

Let me bottle the smells, the images, the sensations

of a lifetime of a perfectly imperfect family

and the house that they painted into their heart’s home.

A final walk through each whispering room,

and I quietly say my thank yous and goodbyes.

       I will cherish the memories…

                                                          -our memories-


Goodbye 1816 W. North Bend Road.

A new family, and a new canvas, awaits you.

©Chris Colyer

May 1, 2015

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