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PostPosted: Tue May 31, 2011 1:42 am 
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The structure of my old house is quite old, probably older than 150 years but solid as a rock. In the entrance lobby, just beyond the big ground level door, in a corner to the left there is an old well and to its right a door and stairs leading down to the wine cellar.

Being mostly empty during my childhood, I was always afraid to look down the well and take the steps down that cellar.

The room in which I slept was huge and its windows, also very big, at night gave the impression of 'something' intent at looking at me in my nightly reveries.

But what I loved the best was my father's library, a big room, vaguely oval, with the walls almost all covered with fancy wooden shelves full of books of all kinds and colors.

In its center there was a big oval distressed wood table, in one corner a big wooden desk, and all around very comfortable easy chairs.

In another corner, a massive locked _glass étagère contained some real fancy blades and other assorted weaponry of another era.

It was my 'refuge' it always made me feel very relaxed and protected as I devoured books as fast as I could.

And I keep thinking to this day_ who knows how much more that old house is want to reveal me…things I can only discover by continuing to 'occupy it' in my recurring dreams.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 04, 2011 4:53 am 
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Could these dreams of my old house keep telling me that there is still a part of my soul-self stuck in that old house? It’s possible, but I’m not sure if I will ever go back to get it.

I want to remember my old house the way it was when I moved. My childhood memories are all in that house, and if I ever go back inside, it will be like walking into a new and strange place.

Those memories will no longer belong in that house; they will only belong in my head, and in my dreams.

There is so much more that happened in that wonderful, mysterious house...trapped still in that young mind...awaiting discovery.


And if there are any ghosts
In my old house
They can only be the friendly spirits
Filled with memories
Of family members who lived there
For so many decades.

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PostPosted: Tue Jun 07, 2011 5:11 am 
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And so in one of the dreams I see my old house as never been sold or renovated after I left it….but as that sacred personal space between the walls of my childhood, mute of any modern sounds yet empty and humid with tears of time …still faithful to the family heir…left behind to age and die…

strangely quiet in the darkness of the night …but rich of memories shadows reflected and intertwined upon the walls and ceilings by any glimmer of light intruding from the reveries.

I feel a light summer wind across my face…" Oh, my beloved ones_ how could I have not known that our time together would come and go so quickly" I whispered to the wind. "I have so many questions and no one to ask."

The stairs down from the heavy Iron Gate to the left of my massive front entrance door, and leading first to the wall of the beloved railroad and next down into the garden was a shambles of broken wood and fallen brick. My breath stopped. I swallowed hard.

A black dog started to bark behind me …. He was pacing nervously back and forth outside the gate I had drawn shut…but he was strangely familiar and friendly…I was not afraid of him…I spoke to him in a soothing voice…his eyes locked into mine _ he began to whimper….and roll on his back.

A protector of the dead?

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:30 am 
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The stairs down the garden looked sad.

"It looks like you've been empty and neglected a long time," I said, reaching down to run my hand over one of the loose bricks that lay beside the cracked boards on the stairs.

The thought came to me…"maybe I should once more scale the wall of the railroad by grasping the natural stone 'handles' and putting my feet into 'step holes' of the wall carved by my ancestry children as well as I …over time…no what am I doing? I will fall and break my neck"

But, taking a left on the landing, I descended into my old playground. It was filled with tall, green grass. I ran my hand across the top of the thin blades. Then breathed in the sweet smell. I saw some lizards scamper about. Never liked those lizards as a child.

Slowly I stepped to the center of the garden and saw the old remnants of physical workout equipment, tarnished, chipped, rusted. There was a soft creaking from the rusted pile… as in speaking to me softly.

In its time the equipment had produced superb heavy muscled athletes of my father and his brothers…one had become a wrestler, a gymnast and mountain climber, the other a gymnasts and rower.

The youngest of my uncles had been the most promising with Olympic possibilities in gymnastics….but he was cut down by fate at the young age of 18.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:32 am 
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"I closed my eyes real tight, like I always did when trying to make something come true, and beamed my wish upon a star."Make this trip last forever." It was now sunrise…I had been huddled on the crumbling steps and dozed off…

The cawing of a crow jolted me awake…flying out from one of the trees nearby, in the land beyond the palisade on my right just behind the nut tree, the garden still in the heart of the early morning penumbra.

Once I had read in one of my father's books in his library…. that Crows gather together, like family.

That they continue to meet on the same tree limb for generations. My eyes followed the flight of the Crow.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 08, 2011 4:36 am 
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At the far end of the garden ….down below the open sided, covered, long balcony we used as a porch that overlooked the garden and the railroad station not far into distance something started to move.

Shadows of light and dark shimmered through the air like waves of electricity.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:52 pm 
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It was . . . my long gone family. Gramma, my aunts_ I see the one aunt who _when I was a child _had died in the bedroom directly across the 'porch' _ it would become my very own bedroom later in life…
I recalled being confused by her death. I could not understand death…[why can't she just get up and walk? I kept asking my mother]
My uncles and some others I didn't even know, maybe my youngest uncle deceased at 18…so many other strange but benevolent faces, all figures shimmering strangely.

I stood frozen. Unable to move. Watching. Listening. Wondering what this was about. Very strange things indeed.

Light drops of rain started to fall from the sky. I could see them gently making their way from the clouds, down to Earth.

In the sudden chill coming over me_it finally came…the answer….like crackling thunder.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:54 pm 
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The voice spoke softly…

"You're right. A part of you has been stuck here. A part of you is us. All of us who settled this land long before you were born. All of us who came after. We've been holding the only part we knew of you, the six year old, and waiting for you to come back."

~~

"You want me to stay here?" I whispered as I slowly turned one way, then another. Searching for the face that would match the voice.

"No, we want you to take us with you."

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 09, 2011 7:57 pm 
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"How do I do that?" I mumbled.

"Put us in your heart. Know your connection."

I stood still. Listening. Waiting. Confused, and clear.

Quiet, but filled with words. Apprehensive, but willing.

Slowly. One by one. They walked into me. My Grandmother. My Great Aunt _ my grandfather[the hunter with an enormous gun collection] My Uncle Remi... my aunt Anna…And others I'd never even seen before.

Young faces and old, dark and light, all became a part of me. It was all so stunningly real in a soft mantle of affection.

Then, I knew. I knew why I keep getting drawn to my ancestral home_

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PostPosted: Mon Jun 20, 2011 5:56 am 
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And then the familiar soft voice:

"I think it is important for you to come to this house so often to reminisce and prepare to finally say goodbye to it.

Maybe in your many dream visits you can take some soil and some paint and some things, a favorite thing or two from this house. You need a ritual. You need a way to say goodbye.

That's what you should do. Come to this house and spend time here and say goodbye to it. Talk to the house and let it talk to you and make your peace with it.

This is an opportunity for you to learn how to gracefully let go of things.

Letting go of your childhood ancestral home is particularly hard.

I know of your childhood dreams that the house would someday be yours legally and financially the way it had been with your father and because of your thoughts and beliefs that this wonderful old historical house has been and always will be ours…in our family spiritually_ So that way the spiritual, the emotional and the financial could come into harmony.

But that is not what happens with real estate. Because we are not connected to the land the way our souls are; there is an intermediary layer of commerce between us and the land our souls love and feel kinship with.

The house is not yours. It's as simple as that. Maybe you thought it would be yours, and maybe it could have been yours if things had turned out differently, but no.

Growing up is about accepting what is ours and what is not ours. I am speaking as much to myself as to you when I say these things. It is painful. That is about growing up, too -- learning to bear the pain of loss with grace.

I have felt so awful about this house… I have felt that it were mine but it was not really mine…the reason why I cried so hard that day when coming down the stairs for the last time seeing my soul grasping the walls and begging me not to go.

It was the end of a dream, really --and I knew that you also knew that.

The idea that we all had we would keep the house forever and we would all gather there and be a happy family forever…was nothing but a dream really.

Maybe you can learn this, too. Maybe you can summon your best memories of this place, and give form to them in a set of stories and soft remembrance.

Maybe you can write something long and detailed about this house and keep it, or give copies of it to people so they know how much this place meant to you.

Maybe you can make as many trips as you need to ….and then in that one last trip there _ sit in the old garden for a while listening to the voices and the trains over the wall…

And then let it go. "

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2011 7:41 pm 
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"Next Stop…" _ my Home town…

The blaring announcement arrives loud and clear and over the daze of the drowse caused by the rhythmic and monotonous rattle of the train over the tracks.

I shake fully awake to confirm the announced stop is indeed mine while I make my way to the exit door of the passenger coach grinding to a halt over the rails.

{_I had boarded that train from a crowded platform …I had smiled of joy upon finding my rail number and seeing my train eying me as a trip collaborator. In the slalom to get to my coach_ a clumsy man had tripped over my suitcase and had complained to me loudly. I had looked at him intensely but with a compassionate look…he had lowered his eyes and stopped talking…

" I am finally going home" _ I had told him…_" The sea, my city, my old house, my old friends, my future happiness, are all awaiting my return and I cannot make them wait" _ I had left him there as he was excusing his clumsiness.}


~~~

Image

Only a few moments of waiting …then a lashing of winter air nips at my face. Welcome back _ I tell myself in an auspicious tone as I step down the platform and over to the station….how I loved that train station…I would spend hours on end as a child in that building, a prelude to adventures.

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PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:23 pm 
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Just out of the train station, I breathe in deeply the sweet smell presenting to my nostrils. I recognize it in an instant. I had never forgotten it. It is an essence intimate and particular_ the breath of my native city. The odor of which my existence _is impregnated.


Reinvigorated by the renewed contact with my world, by the all enveloping embrace just exchanged I lift the collar of my topcoat, thrust one hand in a pocket, and shrugging my weariness off my shoulders…I drag the suitcase behind me with my other gloved hand as I begin the fairly long walk towards my old house.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 3:09 am 
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Walking with my nose up in the air, I try to understand from what natural magic the milky veil of humidity that has taken over the streets, at that late hour, remains fluctuating and suspended at mid air. I slow down and catch the echo of my steps that rebound on the wet sidewalks before it jumbles with distant subtle noises of the night. I smile while a thin sigh of pleasure accompanies the wonderful sensation of freedom I feel throbbing in my veins.

Image


I am finally back. Such happiness never thought I would ever again experience. The dream of returning to my enchanting old city did come true after all, after those horrible ten months in that awful place.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 3:51 am 
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My eyes, no longer weighted by torpor, look as if seeing all for the first time, darting vigilant and attentive…ready at the taking of every small detail, at the catching of every feature of the quarters that they survey.

The lowered roll up blinds on the store fronts that gift me with an image of serenity.

They seem like eyelids stretched over big somnolent eyes, that aided by the night quiet, had fallen asleep at the glow of the yellowish and artificial night lights on the sidewalks, without suffering for the absent_ chaotic coming and goings of the people.

My old town, so tranquil and hushed, has an intriguing and hypnotic magnetism.

I am fascinated by the spinning leaves dragged by the breeze that flee, chase, embrace and once again separate.

I jolt at the sudden noise of a nervous flutter of wings by a nocturnal bird, frightened by my presence.

As I walk that familiar walk away from the train station …I am at ease with the encroaching blackness of the night, well in the embrace of my warm top coat…and in wait of the lazy unwinding of the late night …ready to catch every minimal transformation, every unusual manifestation of pulsating life behind the shades of night.

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PostPosted: Thu Jun 23, 2011 3:52 am 
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There are so many indescribable familiar sensations triggered by the vision of a light fog that lifting from the sea…slowly comes to rest on the sandy shore and _ beading small pearls of humidity on my hair and my skin_ fills my soul with tenderness and nostalgia.

What now comes to mind is time already past, and passing so quickly…I think of a today slowly yet quickly becoming a yesterday, with a tomorrow in arrival ….of the new joys and old anxieties that it would bring.

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