When quick I see a stilling sight
A humble, lone, yet warm abode
With plaque on front ‘bove yonder door.
It is no welcoming nor warning sign
More curious and more moving still
Upon this plaque the name is mine
And I am left to wonder why.
I turn to right and back to left
Yet none in view this cause to tell
And with no reason I stand bereft
While staring at this dwelling bare.
The answer I must seek alone
So up before this house I trod
I once did knock, I once did moan
For fear of what may find inside
No answer came the stern reply
A knock once more to catch my breath
My hand outstretched the latch to try
No key was needed for this place.
Upon first look three rooms I saw
Warm, inviting, yet empty save
For shelves four high along each wall
And only vessels filled their space.
I took the first my hand could reach
And picked it up but as I did
I noticed marks or tags on each
With writing all in stunning hand.
The vessel now I did lay hold
To see what script its tag did bear
And as I gazed my blood ran cold
For it did mark the name of friend.
The lid pulled off, my heart did throb
As memories flooded from my mind
From vessel forth a wail, a sob
They were my own once for my friend.
I put it back, I could not bear
The dying of a faithful friend
Once more to my mind made aware
Him so sweetly missed and longed for.
I walked once round the first of rooms
Running a hand along the shelves
Wondering could they all be tombs
And why I did come upon them.
I chose another vessel neigh
Reading the inscription once again
And seeing the word heaved a sigh
For this one bore a happier note.
Once relieved I pulled lid after
To see what memories might flow forth
Out sprang joy and floods of laughter
Sweet thoughts becomes this friend of worth.
Back on its shelf went vessel bright
And I into another room
To see what more was in this site
Where shown me death and joy thus far.
The smaller room I came to then
And looked about as once before
And locked my gaze on jar so thin
Tis then I knew t’would be the next.
A moment scribed upon this tag
It was not friend alive or dead
My memories then began to lag
And wondered back when I was small.
This lid I did not want to pull
Knowing within what I should find
But then I did, and it was full
Of fears, of worry, and of dread.
I quick returned the lid but there
Still lingered in my thoughts the scenes
Of weighty and too many a care
Wondering where next meal would be.
Distraught, I could not open more
Yet glancing at each tag I felt
Each jar had opened up and bore
The very substance of my life.
And spying then through tears and sobs
A note shelves’ end addressed to me
I snatched it up in spite of fears
And this is what it said to me:
Here sits the house of all your life
Herein the contents of your strife
Herein embodiments of joy
Herein the proof of shame and ploy.
Here sits the house that has made you
Herein the contents tried and true
Herein the memories that have shaped
Herein the reckless that has aped.
Here sits the house that tells the tale
Herein are stories of prevail
Herein are truths that have been learned
Herein are loyalties long earned.
Here are the vessels of your life
The toils, hopes, and struggles rife
Divinely provided along the way
That make you who you are today.
And so I found the answer here
Of why this structure stood thus by
The plaque on front my name appear
And caused me enter on my way.
The journey of this life goes on
And there will be more vessels filled
Raised Ebenezers come and gone
Marks The Provider’s kindly hand.