The contents accumulate,
an aggregation of desires,
chosen with economic care
and young hopes of future ease,
only to be discarded
sacrificed on fashion’s altar.
TV tubes morph into flat screens,
their ganglia of wires are pruned
and the once loved leather lounges
are deemed unfashionable,
despised, they no longer please,
their kindly embraces now spurned.
Evidence is erased by paint
of youthful progeny and marks.
No toys litter the dust-free floor,
no boyfriends clamour at the door,
just the third dog waiting for
a visit by the family throng.
Juicers, used once, electric fans,
artificial flowers, pans,
huddle in the attic gloom,
their ruminations scarce disturbed
by thermal insulation
or new air-conditioning ducts.
Below, the beds no longer creak
with joint or lone furtive desire,
but still bear the weight of sleep
waiting their turn for renewal
of duvets or mattresses
or that last journey to the dump.
When the front door slams one last time,
the empty rooms can exhale
the final breath of occupation,
and listen to the world outside
for the next engine on the drive
to relieve the sadness of the house.