‘I built myself a house of wood...’

Felix Dennis
May 6, 2003
Mandalay, Mustique
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I built myself a house of wood
Where once an apple orchard stood.
On stormy nights I lay in bed
While rafters moaned above my head.

They wept aloud for limbs long lost,
For buds pinched out by early frost,
For wicker baskets piled with fruit,
For phantom branch and withered root.

I caulked the roof and rafter beams,
But still they whispered in my dreams,
They spoke of rising sap and wood:
And then, at last, I understood.

This spring, I planted out a score
Of apple saplings by my door.
Now stormy nights my rafters chime
To cider choirs and nursery rhyme.