White House

by Carrie Johnson

 

The little white house
I always drive by
reminds me of the
no compromise
thing
between us

 

Your house is strangely
set back from the road
in back of somebody else’s house
who was lucky enough to get a view of the road
and the house across

 

Somebody had to cram in another house
in someone else’s backyard
I don’t remember if
you had a backyard

 

and I imagine that
when you look out your window
all you see is the house in front of you
Maybe that’s how it’s always been

 

I drive by
and I know you’re not there
so I crane my head
around
to look at the white plastic chair
and the wicker furniture I know is inside

 

I don’t think it was really fair
how we turned out
I don’t think you were right
and I don’t think I was right
I think you showed me
your worst
and I showed you
was my best
so all I could feel was empty
and disappointed

 

That little white house
will always be your house
the little white afterthought

 

No compromise
then
no room with
or without
the house in front of yours

 

And I'm not sure if it would change much
if there was no house in front of yours

 

All we'd have then is the street

 

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