Which doors that others have passed through have you closed off for yourself?
As I ask, I wonder; is this question for me, or you, or both of us?
Let the answer to the second be both.
And, in permitting myself to ask the first, I will know that of myself too;
As would you.
The remains of this house inspire these, and other thoughts –
They are of someone arriving home in the rain, shaking droplets from a hat, being welcomed, and glad of the sight of the fire.
They are also of leavings. Wavings. Closings.
Of all the things played out on the stage of a home –
Simple moments in the act of living, never verbalised;
Things seldom thought of, until they are no more.
Did the people of this house allow themselves to pass through every door, in life? To access the fullness of joy, grief, and the knowledge of what it is to be truly alive, for better or worse?
And what of their dreams?
Was it those which brought them across, or took them from this threshold?
Or perhaps, in the absence of any means of realising them, they created their own ways through which to imagine – to envision their fulfilment.
Isn’t that how the ivy now spills from the roofless wall?
Nature must find its way.
By Emma Hynes
This image and story are part of a project I have devised called There Are No Fixed Stars, my creative response to living with COVID-19 restrictions. On 22 October 2020, Ireland’s highest level of protective measures was invoked nationwide for a period of six weeks. Starting on that date, and continuing for the duration, I plan to capture a new image each day, and write a piece inspired by it. The only restrictions are that I take the photograph and write the text within this timeframe. To receive these daily posts to your inbox, you can subscribe by hitting the follow button to the right, and entering your email address. They will also be posted to my Instagram, Twitter and Facebook profiles; I may even read a selection on my YouTube channel. You can follow or subscribe to any of those at the links below. In a time when variety, freedom, stimulation and spontaneity are necessarily inhibited, my hope is to experience these each day through the creation of something new, and that the resulting pieces might do the same for anyone who chooses to view or read them.
YouTube: Emma Hynes
There Are No Fixed Stars
Day One – A Creative Response to Now
Day Two – Suspension
Day Three – From the Perspective of the Dahlia
Day Four – The Writer at Dawn
Day Five – Beneath the Viaduct
Day Six – Nature’s Book
Day Seven – The Lighthouse
Day Eight – Formations
Day Nine – Rebirth
Day Ten – Light Source
Day Eleven –Takeaway
Day Twelve – Vigilance
Day Thirteen – Defiance
Day Fourteen – Exposure
Day Fifteen – Platform
Day Sixteen – Momentum
Day Seventeen – The Point of Shelter
Day Eighteen – The Honest Writer
Day Nineteen – Moored
Day Twenty – Selfhood
Day Twenty-One – Assurance
Day Twenty-Two – Skylines
Day Twenty-Three – All That Is Lost
Day Twenty-Four – The Oblivious Bird
Day Twenty-Five – Horizon
Day Twenty-Six – Intertidal
Day Twenty-Seven – Lifelines
Day Twenty-Eight – Threshold
Day Twenty-Nine – Perception
Day Thirty – Presence
Day Thirty-One – Pathways
Day Thirty-Two – Lunar Phase
Day Thirty-Three – Time
Day Thirty-Four – Safety
Day Thirty-Five – Sometimes the Heart Soars
Day Thirty-Six – Fulfilment
Day Thirty-Seven – Joy
Day Thirty-Eight – Pride
Day Thirty-Nine – Loss
Day Forty – Time to Fly