The Common Room

I don’t write poetry. But earlier today, while searching for an old document on my computer, I found something I wrote three years ago:

“The Common Room”

How does it happen?— this transformation.
Arriving from many directions,
one bearing snacks,
another the workday’s toll of tension;
one anxious for the family dinner,
one thinking still of the parent’s sickbed,
or the child’s;
one joyful from a day well spent, and one
still processing, processing
the pain of another, revealed
in confidence.
How do we do it?
How do we become a whole,
a body,
each listening to the other,
accepting ideas not our own,
building together;
wiser and more compassionate
than any of us alone;
creating and calling
the spirit of life,
living
the spirit of love.
And then leaving, returning
to the home, or the workplace;
to the family, or the empty room;
to the sick parent, or child;
or to walk quietly before sleep,
thinking, thinking of this day.
How do we come together?
How do we make this time sacred?

— November 2012

In 2012, I had just finished a three-year term on the Board of Trustees of the First Unitarian Universalist Church of San Diego. I guess I had found something inspiring in all of those meetings in the church’s common room.


Photo by the author.

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