Home Coming by Alarie Tennille

Home Coming

To go back to your hometown
and find it doesn’t recognize you.

To see your old house bedraggled
like hand-me-downs left to Goodwill –

gutters stripped, azaleas gone for no good
reason except it’s not your home.

To dread awkward reunions almost as much
as not running into anyone you know.

To get a little lost, finding landmarks
have run away with your childhood.

To startle at the silver-haired man
walking by who’s too much like your dad.

To feel gutted by the gap that was
your high school, but jealous

of a new museum and elegant restaurants
where you’ll never have a favorite table.

To understand this strange place
doesn’t feel like home, but always will be.

by Alarie Tennille, first published in Poetry Breakfast.

Editor’s note: Careful enjambments and clear imagery highlight the bittersweet touch of nostalgia in this poem.

2 thoughts on “Home Coming by Alarie Tennille

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