The smell of old folks houses
by Barry Middleton
makes me believe
that men are made of dust.
When I was young we used to go
by fifteen miles of lonely road
to see the old ones on the home place.
I did not know the meaning then
of musty odors there
and thought them just too old to clean
or too far gone to care.
But I chanced upon my home
one winter day and noticed there
reminders of the fate we all must bear.
It is a mix of dust and home,
a hint of the eternal tomb.