House as teacher

With redwood stain on my elbow and calf, a dot on my cheek, smudges covering the leaf print t-shirt I made with my family at the Wisconsin State Fair, I mindfully paint board after board - choosing to see the work as mindful, not mindless, I’m careful to cover every fiber and crevice. The deck shows its wear after twenty years. Some boards should be replaced.

How many times have I run bristles over this cedar? Twenty? Thirty?

I’m aware that even while the fresh coat of stain is drying, sun, rain, snow, and ice will sweep away my efforts like the sand of a carefully constructed mandala.

Mow and the grass grows.
Shovel and more flakes fall.
Clean the dishes and somebody prepares a snack.

My house is an ongoing lesson in life’s impermanence.

Beauty is not a ‘thing’.

Beauty is a special way of seeing.

What do you choose to see?