The house kept needing repair. I was as if a spirit in the place kept creating excuses for the two of them to be thrown together. At first it only happened once in a while, a leaky gas line, a faucet, painting to be done, a cracked window. Then in a quick succession a host of maladies; squirrels in the attic, blown fuses, a dead 50 year old water heater, a toilet leak.
Each time something went wrong they had to discuss it and more details about eachother were revealed. The conversations getting longer and more intimate. They didn't know the house was causing them to fall in love. The house needed love in it, so; like a child playing matchmaker it forced them inside its small walls by bringing attention to itself. A house without love will chase off those who won't or can't. Remain cold, let bugs in, leak, throw up noxious gases from the pipes. It won't respond to repair if there is no love. Quick fixes failing like quick sex.
Some houses are haunted by fear and pain, tiny whisper like yelling, odors, deep sobbing on the edge of hearing. This house was haunted by love and committment, solid footsteps, endearments, tears of joy and laughter. It had an air of longing and a need to care.
He grew up there and somehow, living in a household with two people who loved for more than fifty years sharing it with children not their own. Such love may seem luck or providence not single mindedness and generosity of spirit.
She had never felt so comfortable in a house, especially a rental. To be in a safe loving full home seem a dream unattainable.
The house knew better. It didn't belong to anyone in the normal sense. Houses never do. Loaning itself to the occupants for a few months or decades. Living ageless slowly measured. After 80 years it had settled into being a sacred space to contain emotion and meld with each new occupant drawing in more love. It had already lived twice as much as both of them put together. Known more of forever than either would. It knew how to be warm and blend in with the natural of every bush, ivey and tiny wildlife. It had a charming decay of brick and wood as it returned to the earth. The house wasn't just a shelter to use, but a benevolent witness to life. Slowly energized, infused by the hearts of those who trusted its protection. Taking on a permanemt nature to attract more of the same.
One house continually filled with infidelity, abuse, screaming and neglect will attract more of the same dramas. Another will always seem to have gaggles of kids, friends around all the time, with lush overgrown gardens. Some never have more than a lonely occupant, dead yards and lonely solitary animals. Some abodes haunted by loss and the walls are ringing with grief long after living family members are moved on, love and laughter filling others.
The White House, governor's mansions, the shed where Thoreau wrote, where Woody Guthrie was born. Graceland. The local mansion everyone knows about. That first place away from Mom's place. Home away from home. Home sweet home. A house is not a home.....The place you dread to go to, are homesick for. The houses lost to fire, flood and economic disasters. Why did they tear down that lovely little place on the corner? God's house got to full and they needed more parking lot?
People settle into homes along with the foundations. We liken our lives to well built homes. Built like a brick out house. Like talking to the walls. Lights on, nobody home. The door is always open. Bats in the attic. References to body and psychi.
People without love get older faster. Feel the cold more, smile less. They too, can become full of cobwebs, dampness, shades drawn without air.
The house was a lesson in love for those who sensed it.It withstood tempest and the moods of mother nature. Consistent in its shelter, calmness and without judgment. A place to breathe freely, speak freely dance naked from bath to bed. A keeper of epic dreams, tiny thoughts and infinity of dinners, lunches, breakfasts and late night tea. A resevoir of private moments to be treasured in its secret ear.
It was amazing how a quick chat on how to get the house repaired would escalate into the lack of committment in modern relationship. How little things like toilet seats being left up or using his razor become the distraction for the real problems of lack of respect and intimacy.
She wasn't the type men dreamed of, not his type. He was so insular no wonder he was alone, unable to find the key to a self made prison. There wasn't anything exotic about her, no great beauty. Plain and small, verging on mousy with a face that didn't invoke thoughts of ruby lips and passion.
He was tall with a mix of chiseled aryan good looks and country softness. Blond hair, blue eyes with thin lips that belayed a hidden sensuality. Beat up and scarred inside and out. The house knew every hidden thought and deed from childhood.
Forced to bump into eachother, murmuring quick nervous excuse me's around a friendly discussion over coffee as he collected the rent. Should they brave the taboo of landlord-tenant? Go to a movie, drink a beer and share one electric melted kiss. Avoid eachother if they can till the house cracked somewhere or leaked. Then maybe he would overcome nameless fear and she her pride. Maybe even find themselves devouring eachothers mouths in frustration, touching feet all night because this could be the last body to be warm with in the night. Him inside her wrapping tight around him as the house settled around them both.
When they thought they were alone holding on to hope. They were watched by the soul of the house. Their hearts light gathered to itself to attract the next people it would take in and need.