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Contributor: Barbara Carlton

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Even when the rooms are empty, they echo
with watercolors of muted voices, edges blurred,
from the decades when their walls breathed in the tints
and textures of the lives they sheltered. They knew
her yearning for the clear air
of the mountainside; his long look
out the window before he left
for the last time; my quest
with the girl who has no name to
the castle that lies east of the sun
and west of the moon. Hush, sweetheart,
put your ear close, you can
hear the walls thinking, like a stream
that rustles through the woods at night.
is a clean shape left behind where the little
landscape used to hang. So often she looked
through its painted surface and wondered
where the time had gone.

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I am a writer and architect living in the San Diego, California, area. My parents are long dead and my children are grown. It's a good vantage point for thinking.


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