from home life is essential to
balm the tedium of everyday thistle,
an eye over the world’s scatter,
deliver a dance or two,
share the sofa with a luxurious feline
five times sleepier than you.
hosts aren’t castle owners
hot to accommodate the inevitable feasting
by a visit from the Earl of Cherry St
(“just in the neighborhood”) so he
back at your kitchen table.
Leisure was fine work in the 11th century.
traveled with a camp of followers
not just horn blowers and squawkers but bands
strolling players; dancing bear trainers; buffoons on
personal retainer; beggars snatching at crusts; and women holding
in dark lots until the wine
ran thin, the barns and larders
and the King’s
train on its way like the plague
on a new resting place.
Visits of modern day temper
in houseguests, can
exalt the keepers to the kept,
longing in the houses to swap
zip codes and rest.