ON the trip home from Nebraska,
the same storms that force a rerouting
also yield views I wouldn’t have wanted to miss.
That’s how it is with reroutings.
* * *
SUNDAY I was late coming home.
Monday first thing workmen came
to tear out the old screen room
and make way for something new.
No time to process
a notepad full of jottings,
a head full of stories.
There are people in and out.
There’s sawing and hammering.
The dog keeps an eye on everything,
apprising me of all arrivals at high pitch.
But today a carpenter
told about buying his first car,
how it was the ’70s and he had long hair
and the salesman didn’t think he could afford it.
He went to the bank and withdrew the full amount from his savings,
asking for it in pennies.
The bank couldn’t oblige,
so he settled for taking it all in $1 bills.
which he took back to the dealer –
not in neat packets,
but loose in a brown paper grocery bag –
and dumped on the salesperson’s desk.
I love a good story better than just about anything
and am glad for the all the sawdust and hammering
and trucks in and out the driveway
that have brought me one.
* * *
THIS is the prayer that came to me at retreat’s end,
that I would see clearly the rerouting,
that I would step in that direction,
that I’d follow through on it, all the way,
not take a stab then leave it half-done.
* * *