The house has been

under construction

For as long as she remembers.

She comes, she goes

And each time,

Something has changed.

One day the backyard

Is a jungle, the next

A cement playground.

The family portraits rearrange themselves

Or pose, smiling separately,

As though for a photograph.

Sometimes they look

Frightened, their eyes fixed

On something just behind her.

One day she comes home

And her father is gone.

“He fell into a crack

On the wall,”

Her mother tells the policemen.

“There are no cracks

On the walls,” they say.

“Just wait,” she says,

Runs her hand over the walls’

New smoothness.

“They were here

Just yesterday.”

The policemen leave,

Murmuring about

Crazy women, crazy girls.

The three sigh

Together. Under construction,

her mother promises,

Just a little while longer.