Who Owns This House (poem)

Pastel drawing cabinet in yellow room with ghost



Who Owns This House


This room, its walls are painted yellow

They call it that, the Yellow Room

The corner cabinet…no plane of it

Quite fits, the hinges pull

My dear, you smile, but I feel the cabinet matters

And he will not have sold it

It wishes to remain


Who owns this house?

I think he is aged thirty, hardly more

He has come to a place in the mountains, flat, flat to despair

Rough stones, as bad for cattle as for the plough

And spare infertile earth

Poor, never visitors enough

To sell to

But his own home is poor


If he sleeps…his name must be Devon or Desmond…

In the room downstairs

He finds he can sleep

But the closet…

The privy, yes…Americans say so

He dreads to visit in the night


No night has been spent in the Yellow Room

Unused but in a time of typhus

One, and then another, three

Carried to the bedstead, borne away

A wasted hand flings free

To limpet on, with panicked strength

Still to the ill-at-ease attendant

Plucking and prying and making rearwards

These words, this pleading, a fevered vision


But the mourning, mourning face

Do I wait for you

Do you wait for me

The invalid hears and straining from the pillow sees

A figure white-clad coffined below the glass

Do I wait for you, O Love, O Death

Do you wait for me




Who Owns This House

Oil painting of city-scapeCastello dei Banditi: Third Battle Stations















 (2019, Stephanie Foster)





  1. Rita de Heer says:

    Vincent van Gogh had a yellow bedroom

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