The House You Didn’t Build for Us

by | Sep 1, 2019

This poem was originally published in Cathexis Northwest Press The house you didn’t build for us

The house you didn’t build for us
Sits on a tiny hill
Watching a shore of a foamy sea
There is a willow
Weeping in the back yard
A red maple is burning bright too.

Sun sets on front door
You on the front porch
A mug of scotch
Me with a martini
Dirty and salty.

In your eyes
I see the setting sun
Two birds flying toward the horizon
Where today ends and tomorrow comes
I hear their cries
Calling for each other.

Occasionally
Your grip was strong
Your touch gentle and kind
But often
Your words were harsh
Your steps too gingerly.

In your lips
I taste the blood that boils in your head
All the passion you could not say
By words, by songs.
Your tight shoulders and heavy neck
Burdened with what you refuse to unload
But can’t claim as your own
Unspoken loyalty to your father
Whose limbs once stopped moving.

Your hands that never lifted bricks
For the house you didn’t build for us
Held perfect contradictions of hope and despair
An ancient mudra undiscovered, never taught.

The house you never built for us
Stands tall in another world
I go there often in my dreams
To bless the trees that never grew
Smell the roses that never bloomed
Kiss the foreheads of children we never had.

They say that to build a house
You must lay one brick at a time.

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Artwork by Jamile Shirley

By Uranbileg batjargal

Golden Threads

Poetry

Uranbileg Batjargal grew up in Mongolia, climbing barefoot on the rocky hills, gathering wild berries, conversing with small birds, and singing out loud in the open summer sky. Today, Uranbileg walks in two worlds. As an economist and a certified public accountant, she makes a living by managing budgets and leading data governance strategy. She is also a poet, an artist, a meditation teacher and a practitioner of healing arts. She completed three vision quests that changed her life and continue to guide her poetry today.

Meet The Author

Uranbileg Batjargal

Uranbileg Batjargal was born in Mongolia. It is the country of horsemen, warriors, conquerors, nomads who travel camelback, shamans who communicate with worlds and dimensions beyond the ordinary reality. As a young person, she loved climbing barefoot on the rocky hills, gathering wild berries, conversing with small birds, and singing out loud in the open summer sky.

Uranbileg left Mongolia when she was 19 to study in Japan, where she became immersed in the contemplative arts. She graduated from the University of Tokyo with a Master’s degree in Economics and moved to the United States to pursue a career at the World Bank. Along the way, she was married—and divorced. Brokenhearted, she renewed her connection to the mystical realms through meditation and other contemplative energy practices. She completed three vision quests informed by the Native American tradition of celebrating the coming of age and starting of a new life. Those vision quests changed her life inalterably and continue to guide her work today.

Today, Uranbileg walks in two worlds. As an economist, a business officer, and a certified public accountant, she makes a living by managing budgets and performance reporting and applying data governance strategy and principles. In her other world, she is a poet, a meditation teacher, and a practitioner of healing arts.

Uranbileg’s poetry is filled with rebellion against the ordinary, longing for freedom and love, and returning to roots. Uranbileg invites us to investigate what in our lives is ready to die; how we can make a companion of patience as we witness the old gradually giving way to the new; and ways we may embrace rebirth with the love and strength that all newborns need and deserve to receive.

Author Portrait

Photo by Mihoko Owada

urana@uranbilegbatjargal.com

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