where the heart is

it’s true what they say,

home is where the heart is.

my heart lies in a small piece

of california

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.

Photo Credit: intercine.net

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 eyes

and teeth

and hair

and hands

and paws

and hearts of those

whom i love the most.

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