Read an Excerpt
may your walls know joy ...
By Mary Anne Radmacher
Red Wheel/Weiser, LLCCopyright © 2009 Mary Anne Radmacher
All rights reserved.
Some years ago I left Ireland after weeks of traveling throughout the island. I was a visitor, a stranger each place I went. Yet I never felt the stranger. Hospitality wrapped me in welcome, encouragement, and joy. I felt so "at home." I wanted to write a blessing that captured this spirit.
I did not remain lost any place in Ireland for very long. I loved hearing the inquiry prompted by my furrowed brow and puzzled look: "You lookin' fer yur way home, lass?" My way home. It is true that home is so much more than a building with a number we list on forms or licenses. Home happens in unexpected places and at unanticipated moments. Home can be a surprise at a new address.
Many years after writing the blessing that Ireland inspired (May your walls know joy ...), I was excited to create a permanent home for myself. Discouragement set in after so many drive-arounds with my real estate agent. I wanted to see joy in the walls ... I just didn't. That is, until one afternoon when I was steps inside a place. I heard my patient realtor whisper behind me, "I have a very good feeling about this ..." "Home," I interrupted.
"Home. This is it. This is my home." It was a declaration.
My realtor understood that connecting with the intangibles of "home" is essentially like love at first sight. Who can explain that beyond a feeble, "I just knew"? An offer was delivered within an hour. Soon this blessing was a framed poster, hanging on a wall in my new home.
This book is what came of writing that blessing and my thoughts about it. This is a blessing for coming in and going out. A blessing for what happens on the inside of a home as much as the road away from and back to home. This is a blessing for the guest as well as the dweller. These wishes hold inspiration for a dorm room, a first home, a last home. They are a celebration of place, story, and joy.
Beyond structures, the blessing extends to those who travel and look through many windows. Great possibilities await us all—and those are blessed who get to travel to that promised joy from their own walls or gaze upon them out the window of their home.
Excerpted from may your walls know joy ... by Mary Anne Radmacher. Copyright © 2009 Mary Anne Radmacher. Excerpted by permission of Red Wheel/Weiser, LLC.
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