Karen Paul Holmes with dog

My Perfect House on the Market
by Karen Paul Holmes

The doggie door is too small for one couple’s mastiff, a retired man’s two old golden retrievers have bad knees and can’t do stairs, a woman with bad knees can’t afford an elevator but loves the ambiance. Though most think the kitchen large, an entertaining wife says it’s smallish. A designer feels the foyer looks out of proportion. One person would paint the oak raised-panel family room white but doesn’t make an offer. The offer of a New Orleans litigator is abhorrently low. He won’t budge. My husband decided the rooms of our marriage, which suited us for decades, no longer fit.

AUTHOR’S PHOTO CAPTION: This is me in the townhome that appears in the poem. My dog, Watson, did fit through the doggie door and was able to climb the stairs to all three levels.

NOTE FROM THE AUTHOR: This prose poem appears in my book, Untying the Knot. I wrote the poem out of frustration when my townhome sat on the market for several months, not allowing me to move into a new home after my divorce. All the potential buyers were nitpicking the heck out of the house, and all I could think of was “Well, I loved it all these years, why doesn’t anyone see what I saw?” All the complaints in the poem were real.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Karen Paul Holmes has a poetry collection Untying the Knot (Aldrich Press, 2014), and her work was chosen by Stay Thirsty Media for their Best Emerging Poets 2016. Poems have appeared in many journals and anthologies, including Poetry East, Atlanta Review, Slipstream, Lascaux Review, and The Southern Poetry Anthology Vol 5: Georgia (Texas Review Press). Karen hosts an open mic night and a monthly critique group.