Issue – Rollender

Nicole Rollender

Wabi Sabi

“ … the beauty of things imperfect, impermanent and incomplete …”

In the underground bar, the bathroom walls
that had been covered in sayings, graffiti, late-night ramblings,
are like bone – whitewashed back to the beginning of time, naked and trembling.
The disordered writing was beautiful, now wiped away.
In October, the Japanese tea ceremony celebrates wabi – imperfection – as late
summer passes away into fall. You might light a votive. You might
hum an old chant. But, what you must do is lovingly take out mismatched
tea cups, saucers, a mended pot and spoon from the bottom
of your cabinet. This is the time to cherish what’s left, what’s passing
from the old to the new. It’s not easy to be still as you’re at the end
of one life; it’s not easy to breathe in the last of the orange or spice tea,
knowing it’s the last cup of the season. Knowing you’ll soon blow out this candle.
Someone, though, will write a new word on the wall – hope or listening
or just enough – hand pausing as what’s no longer perfect is now alive,
just born.