BHAY Blog, day 4 of “Good to Go, Hard to Leave”: The Tantalizing Joy of An Empty Bookcase

Empty Shelves Are Full of Possibilities

As my doctor and I discussed upcoming changes, she asked, “Are you looking forward to the move, getting excited about your new job?”  I told her, “No, because it’s so hard to get ready to go I don’t have joy about the new thing’s possibilities.”  

It’s been agonizing dealing with the stuff, and very hard to get the house ready for.a showing because just when I think I have everything squared away, I turn around, and there’s some more recycling, or a trash bag, or belongings that need to be hidden before the visitors show up. I haven’t had the house in perfect order yet for an Open House. It doesn’t help that my knees hurt constantly so these days I hobble more than I walk, but still….

But the doctor’s question turned my thoughts in a new direction.I began to think about the beautifully empty set of shelves in my new office. So many shelves, the most I’ve had in any office yet. All beautifully empty., promising a fresh start, all these bookcases will be my artist’s canvas.

The apartment will also serve as the studio and my belongings will be the clay and marble which I will use to sculpt a beautiful place to live. With this perspective I am more willing to donate, leave, and trash what I no longer know to be useful or believe to be beautiful, to borrow from William Morris.

So yes, now I am beginning to get excited about the new job.

Blessings to you!

Today’s Prayer Poem is “Mint” by Seamus Heaney

It looked like a clump of small dusty nettles

Growing wild at the gable of the house

Beyond where we dumped our refuse and old bottles:

Unverdant ever, almost beneath notice.

But, to be fair, it also spelled promise

And newness in the back yard of our life

As if something callow yet tenacious

Sauntered in green alleys and grew rife.

The snip of scissor blades, the light of Sunday

Mornings when the mint was cut and loved:

My last things will be first things slipping from me.

Yet let all things go free that have survived.

Let the smells of mint go heady and defenceless

Like inmates liberated in that yard.

Like the disregarded ones we turned against

Because we’d failed them by our disregard.

Grace and peace,


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