Thursday, June 30, 2016

The last days of Troy



The Last Days of Troy

Alex called from the studio
They’re breaking down the shelves
and my heart sank
No! Wait! Ask them to wait
I’m not done there yet

And all afternoon my mind worried for it
for the goodbye not yet said
for the ritual not yet performed
for the quiet not yet released

As my work day closed
as the editing went into waiting
I knew that tomorrow wasn’t a good idea
the pull of the place was now
and I went down

Still noise there,
still disruption, still transition
but less now, only one or two of the artists
I’d never seen now packing
now dismantling their creative lives
as I had been doing all week

Five trips to the car
then sweep the floor
a frivolous gesture in light of what
would track across it soon enough
but a full circle come to
sweeping the first thing I did
on taking possession
three years ago May

When only my stool
and the wide openness
of the floor and walls remained
I sat and said a prayer of thanks
to the muse and the floor and the walls
for finding a piece of myself here
I’d not known was lost
for opening my soul
for sheltering the eager child in me

I was rewarded with stillness
inside and out
the hammers and drills
on meal break

And then I was complete,
as complete as I could be in the loss
and I folded up the stool
and put the two keys on the table
and took my grateful heart and the stool
down the steep, steep stairs
and out the door to 11th St
one more time
and drove the last pieces
of three years at Troy
home in the June-lit evening

Jill Kelly, 2016

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