“Places, Then, Now”

My parents lived in a barn’s second floor when first married,

Gray and white chickens and three red milk cows below.


Hay, bats and birds around and above their first home.

I never imagined I’d have a house.

Now, I do, a large one, with jungly yards.

The Mexican bus bumps along, drizzle on the windshield.

A sad song plays over a speaker by the hunched driver:

“It’s a house, not a home, without you.”


The words make sense.


I see her gone.

Sad, like the song…

The universe, about 14 billion years old,

The stars, just a little younger.


No houses then.

No homeless man crossing the street with his dog to an empty field,

Beach umbrella his roof under a tree.


A car hitting his dog.

The dog squealing, rolling over, breathing slowing

The man going to his umbrella tree home.

No woman with a car as big as a house, parking  and running into a store;

Buying shampoo, lipstick and batteries.


The song, true ….



Author: Gene Novogrodsky

Eugene “Gene” Novogrodsky, a Brownsville resident for nearly three decades, writes North American border slices, from eastern Canada to central Mexico, and in between. He is one of the founders of the Narciso Martinez Cultural Arts Center Writers Forum in San Benito. He sometimes participates with the informal Resaca Writers Group in Brownsville. He prefers, however, to read to two or three attentive listeners – when asked!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.