The Old Gross Place

By Patricia Ranzoni

Across the road the
     old dairy is an apparition.
Not haunted so much as
     that it is, itself, a ghost.
When I go for mail, Hazel
     is not in the kitchen.
Mary is not upstairs, Tom
     not in his chair
by the window. White sheers
     are an absence I prom-
ise to remember.
     One could watch forever
and never see them again.
     Search clean through
those waving old panes
     front to back, not a soul
not even a stick of their furniture
     to rest wavy eyes
on. Why a neighbor
     can look clear through
that thinning house
     all the way to heaven.