Shawn in my New House

Shawn, you vagabond;
You caused me miss my lunch,
In my dream.

There I was,
On what should have been
The Finglas Road,
When I met you
Coming towards me.

I cannot explain the great joy
I felt at meeting you,
After all these years,

But, in an instant was aware
Of multi aspects
Of a shared past,
In Art, Music, Poetry and Drama,
In professional experience
And Opinion,
Contrarian, Futuristic.

But it was not this reflection
That delayed my lunch,
But what came next,

For, in my flush of joy,
I asked you to lunch,
But first, come to see my house.

To my own surprise I led you,
Not to my own home I had just left
But my new house –
New to me too, as much as you -
Across the Finglas Road,
Where the cemetery used to be,
But now a mansion stood,
Amid rich, landscaped, pasture-land,
An old house, re-modelled,
I quickly gathered, to my design.

We climbed over the wall to enter
And I took you to a modest door
In between two out-jutting rooms,
Saying, “This is the front door,”
For I new no better.

Now, the outside of the house
Was complexly encased
Fashioned in modern
Quick-drying cement
To resemble weathered lime-stone.

The new adornments
Completely enclosed
The original plain building,
Transforming it into a magical thing
Like Barcelona Cathedral.

I thought the purpose
Of encasing an existing structure
Should be insulation,
But could see nothing insulating,
Only decorating.

When we got inside
We found two functional
Living rooms,
But beyond there was a further door,
A glass door with oak uprights,

Leading to a wonderful foyer,
With stained glass wall and door -
The visitors’ front door -
And inside, in the spacious, sun-lit foyer,
Were indoor-growing tree-shrubs,
Not in pots, but in ground-soil,
And, in-between, granite paving.

Then there was another door
From the foyer to a room on the other side,
And, to your enquiry,
Quickly thinking of the utility-value
Of a room on the far side of the foyer
From the living quarters,

I said, “That leads to the Committee Room,”
(That would be a room where business visitors
Could come to palaver
Without disturbing family).

But, when we went through that door,
It led to a tower-room
And a winding staircase
Down to a lower level.

The tower was filled with light,
And to prove me not wrong,
There was, at the bottom,
A table and chairs,
For committee business.

And the winding stair,
It instantly occurred to me,
Was not darkly enclosed in stone
Like the stairs in Saint Peter’s Church
I had to climb to the choir loft
When I joined the choir
At seven years of age,
And found quite terrifying,

So my new winding stairs
In my new house
Was completely open,
Though walkers were assisted
By a hand-rail.

And then I woke from my dream,
And realised that I had missed my lunch,
For I had delayed too long
Showing you, and discovering,
My new house.

Being schooled by Carl Jung
I cannot but think that my new house
Is a great new enterprise
Or group of enterprises
I am about to engage in

At the expense of foregoing
Ordinary things, like lunch;

A great house of multiple rooms,
Some plain, some exotic,
Each room a new idea to explore,
And a tower of thought and reflection;

And you, Shawn,
Representing certain qualities
Of my own person:

Creativity, artistry, performance,
Poetry and initiative.

That’s all.


A Memoirby George Rowley

Gaudi-style adornments

Gaudi: An Introduction to His Architecture

Memories, Dreams, Reflections (Flamingo) C. J. Jung

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