Two Poems by Deborah Davitt

They never left

When I dream,
my house spawns new rooms,
piled with belongings not my own.

Second kitchens and secret doors,
bedrooms crammed with unfamiliar furniture,
photographs of strange faces,
all fill me with dread.

But it’s the aquariums,
stocked with healthy fish,
(I’ve never fed them; how do they live?)
that make me wake screaming.

For I know that someone else is here,
and always has been.

And I wander the house waking,
looking for the doors
that aren’t there.


Past is Present

A game trail barely visible wends through
the dark woods;
Footsteps erode it over time into
a broader path.

The dirt track became the path to Grandma’s
house in the forest;
deemed too dangerous for younglings, parents
cut down trees, let light in.

This broader path beckoned commerce, settlers;
farmers cleared land and sowed it.
Wagon ruts invited accidents, so
cobbles smoothed the way to market.

The market became a town, the town changed
to a city, and the cobbles were paved;
but the road remembered deer tracks, paw prints,
and refused to move in a straight line.

Sitting there in their cars, the drivers sighed,
inhaling exhaust and cursing curves;
but some thought they could smell green leaves,
or the scent of fresh-cut hay.

And stuck in traffic, dreamed
the road’s memories,
of farms and dark woods.


About the Poet
Deborah Davitt grew up in Nevada, but earned her MA in English at Penn State, where she taught college composition. She currently lives in Houston, with her husband and son. Her poetry has garnered her Rhysling and Pushcart nominations, and has been published over twenty venues. Her short story work has appeared in IGMSCompelling Science Fiction, and other venues. For more about her work, please see