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Richard Hoffman: Refugee

A man carries his door,
the door of his house,
because when the war is over
he is going home

where he will hang it
on its hinges
and lock it, tight,
while he tries to remember
the word for welcome.

If his house is gone
when he returns,
he will raise it from rubble
around this door.

If he cannot return,
the door will remember
the rest of the house
so he can build it
again, elsewhere.

And if he cannot go on,
his door can be a pallet
for his rest, a stretcher
to carry him, his shade
from sun, his shield.

From Gold Star Road, Barrow Street Press, 2007

Richard Hoffman's four books of poetry are Without Paradise; Gold Star Road; Emblem; and Noon until Night. His other books include the memoirs Half the House and Love & Fury, and the story collection Interference and Other Stories.
Richard Hoffman

8 comments on “Richard Hoffman: Refugee

  1. Myr
    June 25, 2022

    There is no where like home… but sometimes this door becomes very heavy… and holding on to the dream of going back, as life continues and gets more complicated, becomes harder and harder… I am still carrying my door… but I wonder if I will ever be free if I don’t let go…

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Michael Gregory Stephens
    April 23, 2022

    Thank you, Richard.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Richard Ryan
    April 21, 2022

    Stunning, my friend!!

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Barbara Huntington
    April 21, 2022

    Love this. Are we all carrying our doors? Should we?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. -rg
    April 21, 2022

    A Classic, Richard! Thank you! -rg

    Liked by 1 person

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This entry was posted on April 21, 2022 by in Poetry, Social Justice, War and Peace and tagged , , , , , , , .

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