Vacancies [Part II]

3 02 2011

For this new piece I used my own poem (which was a lot more satisfying) that I had written a little over a year ago, and adapted and expanded it to six three line stanzas, then arranged it as a “for sale” sign (with help from Becky on the first half). This on the lot on the corner of Summer & Holly. [read my description of the Vacancies project]




FOR SALE: Houses

like halved pears, stripped skinless,

golden in heavy syrup,


on a small plot—memorial lawn

where scattered stones; where

Joseph’s bones buried in weeds


and sunflowers, sparking wires,

twist toward heaven

from abandoned soil.


FOR SALE: steps to no porch,

door to no room, the First Ward—

the sunken ground, the muddy yard


between bayous, the basin

beneath Houston’s heights,

collecting bones since the Civil War.


Dead soldiers, dead dogs—skeleton strays—

guard these vacant lots, these unmarked

graves waiting to be built over.




2 responses

8 02 2011

Well, unfortunately someone took these sometime between Thursday and Friday afternoon. It’s part of the nature of this project, though: submitting it to the public to see, and to the public to tamper, remove, and/or misunderstand it, especially since this is dealing with issues of property, land, and ownership.

8 02 2011
becky harlan

you should print out a big photo of it and put it where the real sign was..

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