Soffit is a builder’s word, a carpenter’s word—
like fascia and header and stud.  Top plate
and joist.  Soffit though has a mantra quality.
Whisper it over and over as you slip into deep
meditation.  soffit, soffit, soffit…

 As if to quietly call the angels to your side,
whispering low so they have to move in close
to hear.  What is it you want, they ask—nothing.
What is it you want—nothing.
Want being deceiver’s word, a labyrinth.

The soffit seals the attic, keeping out squirrels
and raccoons, though a determined creature
may find its way in.  You set out a trap.
Raccoon may be a mantra word as well,
though you hesitate to use it.

It’s raining.  You check for leaks,
an old habit.  You listen to the rain
as if the patterns were code one deciphers,
rain being a sacred gift—like air.
What is it you want—nothing.

You are dry and warm inside your house.
Puddles form on the driveway.

From an Upstairs Window