Don't get out of the car until you've gathered all the trash, all the bags and bundles buried in the trunk. Leave no trace in the garage. Unpack that bag before you sit down, stow away suitcases so we can get to stirring soup. Erase each trip as if it never happened, never disturbed this tidy scene.
I wonder now why we weren't allowed to show that a journey took place, a place journeyed us--why we had to smooth suitcase footprints from the bedspread. Why she needed to be unruffled, to have everything the Same As Before?
I gather the trash, sort the paper and plastics. I hang up the clothes and fill the suitcases with each other--a blue box Matryoshka. The old habit chides me to scoot each chair back into place, to rub the rubbish bin with a cloth until it shines.
But my feet were in the lake, my toes touched stones. My eyes met others and my hands held hearts. My railroad track future ripped up and hovered before steering, shifting and assembling itself in a new direction.
So I leave my treasures on the bed. I tell the trash to stand guard for one more day. The place looks loose, disrupted.
As if someone has been on a trip.