Safe House

byAngeline©

Stop kissing Beatles,
and go to bed!

Daddy's voice decrees it,
but his stern tone
can't obscure the laughter
threatening to reveal itself.

Girl giggles escape,
tumble down narrow stairs
and climb on the couch.

Not a sofa or davenport;
it's not that sort of house.
It's more a frayed cabbage-rose
runner on the staircase
kind of place,

where Mrs. Silvestri's lasagne,
made fresh Thursday, lingers
over the weekend, whispers
cheesy garlic memories.

Upstairs two heads press, conspire,
one freckled and with hair
that same Daddy red
lapped down shoulders,

the other a pale schtetl throwback
dipped behind a dark veil.

Stop kissing Beatles?

But there are dozens more,
striding across posters,
running for trains, cavorting
as moptops do, singing
I Wanna Hold Your Hand.

This Ringo's head is tilted
in a kind quizzical smile
behind the Ludwig kit.
That John's bowed posture
is unbowed by the small tear
near his neck, the piece of tape
holding him to the wall.

Somewhere among them
and the crowd of Georges
and Pauls and the space
between the bunk beds
is the reassuring scent
of Grace's tomato gravy.

The night emanates safety
and rustles, settling
the small yellow room
face down into pillows,
curled within quilts
that almost muffle
the murmurs of innocence.

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