There’s a certain endearment
About the black and white tiles on the floor
of Toy Boat Dessert Cafe,
the lingering smell of coffee,
the figurines that line the wall.
I grew a piece of home
in the table next to
the ice-cream-sticky rocking horse.
I planted a seed of home
between the rocks leading
to the creek where time
seems to flow like honey
and the leaves above make verdant
stained glass. I watered it
with trust and peace
so I would never forget
the home I found in friendship.
There’s the sprout of home among the faded blue seats
that stand as silent sentinels
in the 3:42 Southbound Caltrain
from Hillsdale station.
In the Debussy that plays
to the sound of the train, the people
who seem to live
in a world of their own.
In the place where the waves crash
like cymbals against the grainy sand
revealing shards of shells
and frosty sea glass,
I hid a tendril of home inside the wave-battered wood.
I watched as it sent roots, giving life
to the tired grey trunk of the fallen tree.
The ecstasy of performance is woven
into every branch of my home, like amber
strung on gold wire.
Amber for the last note of the piece,
the sweet exhaustion as I relinquish
my hold on the burning energy
that fills my veins when I play music for others.
When I step back
and look up, towards the sun,
I see the leaves and branches of an oak tree.
My feet stand next to gnarled roots
that stem from the little seeds of home
that I scattered
and tended around the bay.
And I know
the oak-tree-home I nurtured
mapped by the roots on the ground
will continue to grow.