Thursday, December 20, 2012
There are cracks
Outside the wind is howling . . . H O W L I N G . . . wrapping around corners and rattling old windows and I wake from the moans of this old house. I try to shut it out, that shriek of swirling air, but it pursues me and finds me hidden under covers and there is nowhere that I can escape its grip.
I get up and walk through the darkened house, lit softly by the glow of star shaped lights, to get to the front door. It's an ill- fitting door, old and wooden, and I can stick whole fingers in the gap at the bottom. The cold air is rushing in, streaming like a hemorrhaging vein that can't be stopped, and I feel like that little Dutch boy looking at that leaking dike. I look down at my hands and know that ten fingers mean nothing.
I find the yards of foam caulking in the closet and I rush to shove it into the one huge gap that circles round the entire perimeter of the door. It is a swaddling of sorts, with all of the tucking and patting and wrapping... yet ... still
my house whines.
I cannot keep the wicked wind of the northwest from sneaking inside.
And I think about all of the people who have lived in this house, all these last hundred and seventy years.
How, every winter, there has been the same battle against wind and weather.
How, every winter, there is moaning and howling.
And how, no matter the attempts by good, well meaning folks to keep the storms outside,
There are cracks, to be sure, and you can find them all over this house. And the wind, it roars straight to those thin places.
And as I stand in front of the old door I feel it.
I feel my cracks.
And when the wind blows, there is a rattling deep down that is hard to muffle.
When the gusts cut round my sharpest corners, sometimes, there is a howling.
And when those storms sit atop my house, holding me fast in their grip, there is a rending.
But The Song, it says that those cracks are also how the light gets in.
All these storms--they will never cease. These winds--they will continue to blow and shriek and howl. I can't stop them any more than I can stop the light from rushing in with them.
There is wind, yes. But there is also light.
And as another gale crashes into the walls outside, I hear it. The wind chimes.
They are ringing.
Photo credit: krystian_o on flickr