Albion's House

Albion's House

We came in past the point,
a light breeze moving through the boats,
working boats for hauling lobsters, netting fish,
not playthings like our Traveller
with her spread sails and frivolous dance.

For twenty years we passed this cove,
saw no changes taking place,
the quiet houses resting in a curve,
the Maine of stories, families
rooted in this spot.

Climbing up the bank,
we met the not-quite-derelict house,
toothless, hunched with age,
fiercely holding its hundred years
despite the wild northeast winds.

Albion's father found these framing boards

floating off the Grand Banks,
lost from a schooner
in a great storm.

We found this spot,
the house decaying,
the fallen porch, the leaking roof,
rotted beams, not much future.

The ruined house behind us,
Ahead the islands' sweeping line,
Eagle where Perry rested dreaming of the North,
Sand Island protecting us from storms,

And we, bewitched,
stood in a dream.

Lari Smith