My great-grandmother's house
is small and white
and needs paint badly.
The garden is overgrown
and mown around.
Only yarrow and iris
and tansy survive.

The cottonwoods,
once stately and proud,
have been hacked away
to make room for a
power line.

But the lilacs have
no mildew,
and the peonies
still bloom in
small pink stands.

And the gas stove
still works for
pot roast and boiled potatoes.
And there's a big yard
with room for dogs
and tents and campers
on the 4th of July.

There will be card-playing
'til 3 am,
sparklers and roman candles,
and maybe even some music.

There will be lots of food,
and laughter,
and love.

But for now
it is cool and quiet,
except for the rush
of the wind,
and the hum
of the highway.