Room 101 #sol20

I write in the beloved company of my slicing community at Two Writing Teachers.  This year our March Daily Slice Challenge has been precious to our connection.  Today I am inspired by Betsy Hubbard and narrative poem, Gate A-4 by Naomi Shihab Nye.

Room 101 #sol20

March 21, 2020

I make my way down to my ‘new’ workspace

not quite the same as

my former workspace

waiting there for me to return

return I did yesterday to gather…

what I might need for a future

I’m struggling to believe

The parking lot is empty when I arrive

That is not so strange

the early arrival a habit of mine

I walk down the hall

but today I seem to notice each landmark

your door is there, I pause.

the inexplicable box

of tangrams still a doorstop

your desk is there,

The red book shelf left over from an earlier memory

but you are not

I feel your absence heavy in the space

this week

we talked on the phone

for two hours,

the connection snapping between us

this morning

we would have been

making our pilgrimage to New York

Right now we would have been

in the dark, warm car

settling in to our long journey

planning our day

mapping what coffee place in CT

we will stop at

We would revel in our connection

in our togetherness

in our history

in our rituals

in our practice

The other day you reminded me

that we are still connected

so I send a wish

through your darkened doorway

to be connected

In this disconnection

16 thoughts on “Room 101 #sol20

  1. Lovely … a missing of people … “I feel your absence heavy in the space”
    Some places feel vacant but for the objects that represent the people we know, love, admire, work with.

  2. This line is so powerful: ” . . .for a future, I’m struggling to believe.” You and I are so connected today, as I also wrote about gathering my materials from my classroom (it will be tomorrow’s post). And I, too, would have been on a train to NYC for the TC Reunion today; which, as you well know, is a wondrous day for teachers and coaches to fill our cups with new learning. Our new reality is setting in, I guess… thank you for the beautiful words today.

  3. This is so lovely. The connection and interaction are what I keep thinking about for us and kids. There is so much being bombarded at everyone right now – we all need to keep our connections. Less new and shiny and more tried and true. I know I too feel it as an adult so I cannot imagine how this feels for kids. Kids need their teachers right now and teachers need to connect with their kids. Kids too must miss this space they were a part of five days a week. Stay connected …

  4. My favorite lines are the ending:

    “I send a wish

    through your darkened doorway

    to be connected

    In this disconnection.”

    The lines are haunting, These times are haunting. Everything is so changed. How well your lines capture it … on a happier note: Congrats on your prize!

  5. The line that hit me was the detail of the inexplicable tangram-box doorstop. Odd little facts like those makes us who we are and connect us to each other. Thanks for sharing.

  6. Just a moving post. And you captured what all of us will be experiencing at some point. We miss our colleagues, our children, our schedules however packed they are / were. Thank you for this

  7. Great ending lines! A wish through your darkened doorway. It reminds me of the poem on the Statue of Liberty. We have a lot of darkened doorways that we are hoping will be lit up soon by the people we miss. Oh and congrats on the prize! You certainly deserve it. You are a dedicated, selfless comme writer.

  8. “The red book shelf left over from an earlier memory/but you are not” conveys such a feeling of loneliness from a dear friend. That close bond makes the disconnection even harder.

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