Benediction for Subsequent Tenants
Hang your pictures on the nails I left behind for you, the way
I hung mine using the holes already there as a guide.
Open the kitchen cabinets and see the rings made by glasses
put away wet. Use the wooden dowel in the closet
to prop the bedroom window open on spring nights. Layer your marks
on this house like a palimpsest of blemishes. Let the gouge
you make dragging a lamp across the floor run through the divots
I sowed by repeatedly dropping the claw hammer. When you scrape
the peeling plaster clean to paint, leave a few holes unfilled
like ghost craters on the moon—so when I return, I can run
my fingers over them and know I was here all along, living
with you, the way so many did with me: in the uneven
rotation of the ceiling fan, in the front door's cracked
glass and in the rust stains in the basin of the sink.