For a long time I have been in love with the book ‘The Poetics of Space’ by Gaston Bachelard. I find new treasures and inspiration in it again and again.
“Now my aim is clear: I must show that the house is one of the greatest powers of integration for the thoughts, memories and dreams of mankind …Without it, man would be a dispersed being. It maintains him through the storms of the heavens and through those of life. It is body and soul. It is the human being’s first world…and always in our daydreams, the house is a large cradle. Life begins well, it begins enclosed, protected, all warm in the bosom of the house.”
Extra layer to our being
The protective mother of matter
I also have an urge to add an ‘If’ in Bachelard’s quote…(If) Life begins well
The house may also seem unsafe and uncanny: the unhomely home
“If the house is the first universe for its young children, the first cosmos, how does it shape all subsequent knowledge of other space, of any larger cosmos? Is that house a “group of organic habits” or even something deeper, the shelter of imagination itself?…the house is a nest for dreaming” Forward to the 1994 edition by John R Stilgoe
“…I should like to point out the original fullness of the house’s being. Our daydreams carry us back to it. And the poet well knows that the house holds childhood motionless ’”in its arms” Bachelard
House, patch of meadow, oh evening light
Suddenly you acquire an almost human face
You are very near us, embracing and embraced.
Rainer Maria Rilke
As I write this I reflect on recent events in my life: my mother leaving her home; the house she lived in for nearly 50 years, the home of my childhood and coming to live with us. We in turn will then move with her to another house shortly.
My daughter commented that this home that we are poised to leave will be the house of her childhood, the one she will remember the most and there is a knowing in her that this time of childhood memory will be placed in the setting of this house. I hope it holds it sweetly.
As my childhood home is sold I will only be able to revisit it in my memory, dreams and imagination.
My young son was born in our current house, in the kitchen. I feel I want to mark the spot on the floor or honour it in someway when we leave, mark the place…of the everyday and the extraordinary…the place of the moment of birth.
Born here…it is a few tiles on the floor.
Tile (s)on the floor