still life

"On one side of the balance is the need for home, for the deep solid roots of place and belonging; on the other is the desire for travel and motion, for the single separate spark of the self freely moving forward, out into time, into the great absorbing stream of the world."

(Mark Doty, Still Life with Oysters and Lemon)


That great absorbing stream of the world beckons so fiercely these days.
And I’m doing my best to ignore her incessant whisper.

On the other side of the balance, corners of the house are taking shape, making it so that whenever I am out, the only place I really want to be is home.

This past Saturday, we wandered through an old church-turned-junk-shop filled with salvaged hardware and windows and doors and sinks and tin ceilings. We chose a door, as narrow as we could find, to fill a strange space in the basement.  Zack trimmed the sides and I sanded the wood down, scrubbing off flecks of old paint and wondering where this small door lived before it came to us.

Our basement is a mess of odd walls and empty doorways, pockets of closet space framed in and abandoned. The previous owner must have had grand plans, but the project was never finished, so we are left to fill in the gaps and make sense of the maze.

Installing the door took longer than it should have.
It always does.

But now the empty door frame holds a sturdy vintage door. No matter that the door leads to nowhere and is located in a corner of the basement where no one will see it but us. It was a means of instilling deep solid roots of place and belonging. Of claiming that corner as our own, even if, in time, we'll freely move forward again, claiming somewhere else.

All things considered, it's a damn fine door.


Popular Posts