Friday, December 9, 2011

majestic



This is an old coal chute outside our home. It's majestic, as you can plainly see. Our home has been around a long time and it's had to adjust its heating source three times over the years. First it was heated with coal, then oil, and now there are a couple of boilers to do the job. 

I like to think of my home's history and all of the people who have lived here over the many years. In the short time since we purchased it I think there have been over 20 people coming and going. Maybe closer to 25, but I've lost count. There's life everywhere and there's always something new to discover. It's an old, creaking home that needs many repairs we can't afford, but it's perfect in all the ways that matter. 

I think of all of the emotion that has haunted these walls, strong enough at times to glow in the woodwork: love, anger, sadness, peace, anxiety, contentment, restlessness, fatigue, excitement, curiosity. They emanate from the radiators and bang on the pipes like friendly ghosts. Sometimes I swear a vapor of old emotion passes through my skin and curls up in my heart to rest for a while. There are memories at home here that are not mine, traveling easily from room to room like a draft under a door. I'm content to let them stay. They like this place too.

I imagine the first owner, shoveling coal on a cold winter day like this. He is covered in coal dust as he enters from the back door, but he doesn't mind. He hangs his wool coat on a hook in the hallway and washes his hands and face until the black water runs clear. He warms himself with a cup of coffee and some bread just out of the oven. He listens to the sounds throughout the house, the chattering and laughter filling his body. He is quiet and grateful. I know this man. He reminds me of someone who is sleeping as I type this. Someone warm and strong and close. 

I'm glad for all of the life here, past and present, for every soul who has called this place home. Their memories are safe here. I'm glad to be in this spacious place with so much room for my heart. 

19 comments:

  1. you just made me so excited to stay there a bit longer momma... add a few more memories to the house :)

    ReplyDelete
  2. haha! we were commenting on each other's blogs at the same time! :) i'm excited for you to live here again for a while too danny. i love it when i bump into a memory of you. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Mmmm ... I feel like your house just have me a hug. :o)

    ReplyDelete
  4. *gave* me a hug. Commenting from my not-so-smartphone. Can you tell??

    ;o)

    ReplyDelete
  5. my house is pretty generous with hugs. :) love you girl. thinking of you often.

    ReplyDelete
  6. this place oozes w/ all those things you wrote about baby. i think about that often, of all the people that lived here before us and the stories and memories they created w/ in these walls. it makes me smile. there has been a lot of "life" going on here for a long time.

    ReplyDelete
  7. dave: all of my favorite feelings and memories are tangled up in you. you can haunt me any time you like.

    ReplyDelete
  8. ooooh. i think we have a room designed specifically for those life moments....lol. lets go! wait. can other people read these comments?

    ReplyDelete
  9. dave. we can see you. ha.
    Have you ever had a chance to visit an ancestor's home? A very poignant experience. I was fortunate enough to visit the homes that two different great grandfathers built - and an old falling apart cabin that my gggrandad, a civil war vet, built in 1904. Talk about haunting!

    ReplyDelete
  10. wow marcell. nope. you've got me there. that must have been awesome!

    ReplyDelete
  11. terri, dave - i love you two. so much. holy crap. your blog-comment-flirting just made my night. :)

    ReplyDelete
  12. marcell- that is awesome. i love history; even more so if it involves family history... so cool!

    ReplyDelete
  13. manda: holy crap, i love you too. so much.

    ReplyDelete
  14. lovely, lovely, now I want to visit.

    ReplyDelete
  15. tara: you have a standing invitation...

    ReplyDelete
  16. Terri, this post is absolutely beautiful, and then I came to read the comments and totally cracked up. I love the love flooding through your family. xoxo

    ReplyDelete
  17. christianne: this is one of my favorite posts of late. i didn't exactly know where i was going with it when i started, but it just sort of wrote itself. and the love: it makes me smile too. :)

    ReplyDelete