Wednesday, June 30, 2010

The House was Quiet...

As I was frantically thinking of everything I needed to pack for our week-long trip to 'da UP, eh?' (upper peninsula of Michigan), my eye caught the cable I need to attach my camera to my computer.

"I don't need to take that," I told myself. "I'm not bringing my computer."

Then a client called. "I need you to write some letters for me. How soon can you get them written?"

I gulped, "uh - Wednesday?"

"That's great," she said.

"So," thought I, "I am bringing my computer."

That did not help me remember that important little cord. So - pictures of the UP will have to wait until I am home.

I am writing from one of my children's favorite places to visit in the UP. "The beach?" you ask.


"The way cool 'Kids' Kingdom' park down by the lake," is your next guess.


The Gladstone Public Library. You are surprised, I can tell. But it's true! The first place they asked to visit when we arrived on Monday afternoon was the library.

What's so special about the Gladstone Public Library? Not much, except it's in Gladstone, and it's across the street from Grandma's house. Plus, I let them pop into the library whenever they want. Without me.

They love it.

We are staying at my grandmother's house, which is for sale. (We were, in fact, kicked out last night for a showing. We just went across the street to the school playground.) The house is practically empty, and while we do have electricity and running water, there is no cable TV, no telephone, no internet.

It is very, very quiet. And wonderful. We are listening to lots of audiobooks, reading lots of books, walking around town and spending afternoons at the beach. We're playing games in the evening after dinner, and after the kids are in bed, I read on the porch until it is too dark to see. Then I go to bed.

It's lovely. The only thing that would be better is if my husband could be here with me. But he had to work. At his office. No tele-commuting for him!

In honor of Poetry Wednesday, I found this poem here at the Gladstone Public Library.

The House was Quiet and the World was Calm
Wallace Stevens

The house was quiet and the world was calm.
The reader became the book; and summer night

Was like the conscious being of the book.
The house was quiet and the world was calm.

The words were spoken as if there was no book;
Except that the reader leaned above the page,

Wanted to lean, wanted much most to be
The scholar to whom his book is true, to whom

The summer night is like a perfection of though.
The house was quiet because it had to be.

The quiet was part of the meaning, part of the mind;
The access of perfection to the page.

And the world was calm. The truth in a calm world,
In which there is no other meaning, itself

Is calm, itself is summer and night, itself
Is the reader leaning late and reading there.

Click here to read more poetry.


Molly Sabourin said...

What a perfect poem for the UP, Michelle! I am so, so glad you are relaxing and enjoying yourself in Gladstone! You are such a great mom to take the kids on your own. I loved your post today!

Beth said...

Lovely poem Michelle as my house (for now) is quiet and the world does indeed seem calm. Maybe one cup of coffee and some laundry. Enjoy your vacation. Love, B