Abandoned: Brilliant Disarray


Beautifully Abandoned, Dublin, Ireland

“Why did you leave me?” the Sixth Sense widow asked the space her husband had occupied with her.  

Neither her husband nor mine chose to leave, but death leaves people behind–unmoored, unsettled, unwhole.   Abandoned.

In Dublin, an abandoned home sits directly across the road from an empty bench overlooking the striated sea, just east of the spot where I scattered a seashell of Jim’s ashes into pastel sea foam barely distinguishable from pale cream sand and powdery sky.

Its oceanfront gate is secured by a  sea salt-corroded  chain and a hefty padlock that is conspicuously less worn.   Where a window once allowed people to see in and out, Kelly green paint peels away from a wooden frame and a teal-painted brick barrier.  An archway over the front door appears to be missing, its peak shorn off to reveal a peek of skeletonized facade. Both a nautilus-shaped latch and the iron fleurs de lis atop the gate–some of them tilted ever so slightly to starboard–are pocked with rough cinnamon patches of rust.

Ireland 1491

And yet this sight made me smile, helped me slow my breath, at dawn on a Dublin morning.

Despite all that was missing from the house, the entire expanse from it to the gate–and even beyond, where exuberantly flowering grasses and plants reached out between ornate bars and tickled bare shins–was a riot of color, of intense green, yellow, and magenta.

Early morning quiet was far from complete: birds bewinged with brilliant blue rhombus patterns hopped and sang in the lavish green space behind the bars.   A sea breeze swept and rearranged long lemon-line grasses.

The disarray was brilliant.  

Whatever caused this place to have been abandoned, it somehow seemed more alive for it. Unlike the pristine surrounding lawns and manicured flower bushes, and notwithstanding the dark emptiness inside, this was the place where the birds and I felt welcome to linger.



About Stephanie

In her spare time, Stephanie works full-time, and then some, as an attorney. She has published articles and delivered talks in arcane fields like forensic evidentiary issues, jury instructions, and expert scientific witness preparation. She also is an adjunct professor at a law school on the banks of the Charles and loves that dirty water, as she will always think of Boston as her home. You are welcome to take a look at her Facebook author page, or follow @SMartinGlennon on Twitter. All content on this blog, unless otherwise attributed, is (c) 2012-2020 by Stephanie M. Glennon and should not be reproduced (in any form other than re-blogging in accordance with Wordpress protocol and the numerous other wee buttons at the bottom of each post) without the express permission of the domain holder.
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18 Responses to Abandoned: Brilliant Disarray

  1. A M says:

    With your beautiful use of language, you find the positive and good in three magnificent photographs. AM

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  5. Amy says:

    Beautiful post, Stephanie! Thank you for taking us to the place where the birds and you felt welcome to linger.

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  9. alienorajt says:

    Beautifully written, Stephanie’; I particularly enjoyed the stand-alone, caesura effect of ‘The disarray was brilliant.’ Love it. Alienora

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