it’s true what they say,
home is where the heart is.
my heart lies in a small piece
where fire has burnt the once green shrubbery.
where the air is thick and sweet,
like a gooey piece of my aunt’s famous cheesecake.
where my body knows the winds
of my neighborhood’s roads,
like the lines on my palm.
where my parents squabble over the air conditioning
because “it is way too hot in this car!”
where i can hear my dogs bark
from down the street
just like they can hear the rolling tires
of our mighty, little minivan
turning around the last corner.
where my bed is cool,
despite the melting heat outside.
home is coke on ice
and cereal boxes
spread across the countertops.
home is how i can walk into my room
and pick up a book i was reading before i left.
home is where i wake up from
my cat meowing outside my door.
but, i still know,
after all these months,
not to let him in
or he’ll be scratching at the door
to be let out in ten minutes.
home is my broken closet and messy garage.
but, when i move away for good,
home will be in the way
my parents stick their hands out the window
when we’re driving,
the way my dogs bark
more at paper in the wind
then people at the door.
it’ll be in the way my heart warms
when I see my city’s name pop up
on the freeway
and all the times
i’ve laughed at dad jokes
and silly faces.
for my home is in the smiles
and hearts of those