Nurses who make home visits will be able to relate to this.

I scan houses I would like to visit—to see not only who lives in them but how they live. What health problems or social issues would I have to address?

I took a picture of this house on the west side of Chicago before we moved to Maryland in the early ‘90’s. My good friend, Lois, drove me back there on a lovely  June day in 2007 when I came back to Chicago to attend her daughter’s wedding.

I was sad to see what happened to this house and even sadder that I never got to know who lived there.

best house on the block

You were spectacular.

Dressed unlike any other house in the neighborhood.

For the many years I walked down your street

but never saw the knight who lived inside you—

who displayed shields and crosses across your face.

A mantle of words draped over you like jewels

shouting for attention:

Tyrone Power



Jane Byrne


The day I left, I took your picture.

You smiled in the sun.


Years later, I stand before you.

Has your champion abandoned you to others

that scrape away your beauty?

Your mantle in tatters exposing your dull skin.

Will a new knight come and dress you like all the other bland houses

in this newly gentrified community?

I take your picture.

You look away.

Author: Marianna Crane

After a long career in nursing--I was one of the first certified gerontological nurse practitioners--I am now a writer. My writings center around patients I have had over the years that continue to haunt my memory unless I record their stories. In addition, showing what a nurse practitioner does in her job will educate the public about we nurses really do. So few nurses write about ourselves as compared to physicians. My memoir, "Stories from the Tenth Floor Clinic: A Nurse Practitioner Remembers" is available where ever books are sold


  1. Wow. It looks like there’s no way to even enter the house anymore. What happened to the stairs, I wonder, and everything else? Love the photos and your meandering thoughts about the houses.


  2. Fond memories! It appears that there must have been a host of some kind of issues in that original house. Or, maybe there were none; with all that self expression, maybe they were the healthiest people on the block!


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