I love this poem shared recently by a friend, Saoirse. She’s thoughtful and presences with a big heart and awareness.
I love this poem for its spirit of remembering and honoring both the exterior and the interior.
And thanks Saoirse.
The house has been standing a long time.
Bare wood shows through the chipped paint of the eaves.
Crumbled mortar leaves empty gaps between the bricks of the porch.
Heaves and cracks in the sidewalk leading to the front door
aa lend purchase to random weeds and grass.
The mailbox sits askew, one of the numbers tilted,
aa becoming a confused and downward “seven.”
Waves and ripples in the glass windows distort the curtains behind,
aa a wall of white blocking any view of what lies within.
Attempts to patch the foundation cracks lie crumbled on the ground,
aa a testament in sand to what has been.
The builder stands amidst the chaos of weeds and bushes,
Refurbish? Fix-it-up? Make it “like new”?
aa Or take it down,
aa clear the space,
aa start anew.
The teams arrive,
Tools in hand, ready to work.
The builder stands a moment longer,
Takes a deep breath,
Turns to the workers,
Gathers them into a circle.
The builder tells the workers the story of the woman who lived in this house.
As they remove the cracked wood and crumbling foundation,
aa they will remember who she was, her work in the world.
They will know of her heart as they lay aside the solid wood door,
aa and the bricks from the porch.
They will know the essence of her soul
aa as they carefully remove the wavy windows.
They will remember her name as they safely store the mailbox.
When the weeds are gone,
When the cracked cement is no more,
When mailbox and windows and bricks have been stowed away,
When the ground is bare and clean and flat …
The builder gathers the workers once again in a circle.
aa “Now we are ready.”