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 saw you,

Towards me.

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

But, in an instant, 
Was aware
We had shared

Contrarian opinions,

On art and life,

This reflection is not
What delayed my lunch,
But what came next,

For, in my flush of joy,
I asked you to lunch,
But first to 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 pasture-land,
An old house, re-modelled,
To my design.

We climbed  the wall 
To enter by
A modest door

In between 
Two out-jutting rooms,

“This is the front door,”
For I new 
No better.

The outside of this house
Was  encased
Fashioned in
Quick-drying cement
To look like weathered stone.

The new adornments
Completely enclosed
The original plain building,

Transforming it into 
A magical thing
Like Barcelona Cathedral.

I thought the purpose
Of encasement be

But could see 
Nothing insulating,
Only decorating.

We found two functional
Living rooms,

But, beyond, 
A further door,
Of glass with oak uprights,

Leading to 
A wonderful foyer,
With stained glass wall -

The visitors’ front door -
And inside, 
In the spacious, sun-lit foyer,

Indoor-growing tree-shrubs,
Not in pots, 
But in ground-soil,

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 a foyer
From the living quarters,

I said, “That leads 
To the 
Committee Room,”

(Which 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 

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 

And you, Shawn,
Certain qualities

Of my own person:

Poetry and initiative.
That’s all.

A Memoirby George Rowley

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