Wednesday, December 02, 2009


ATTIC WINDOWS by Anne Porter

I live in a neighborhood
Of three-storey wooden houses
And in their highest gables
Right up under the eaves
Are small oddly-shaped windows
That I never notice
Till suddenly one evening
They fill up with light
And I know that my neighbor's children
Are home for the holidays

These are the windows
Of those attic bedrooms
With rough rafters
Rooms that are either
Too hot or too cold
They may contain a drum-set
Or an empty birdcage
Or a broken chair
Even a honeycomb the bees
Abandoned in the rafters
They're rooms needed only
When every child is home

Only on holidays
And maybe close to midnight
A light in a triangular
Or round or fan-shaped window
Will at once appear
Shining above the trees

It gives off a flash of wonder
Like a child's first word
Or a singer touching her highest
Most beautiful note of all.

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