This blue marble

– and yet it spins

The end of a hundred-year-old shed

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There once was a little shed in the back of the garden. Its back was bent from carrying two layers of roof, shingles and tiles, for a hundred years. Its pair of black-painted doors were hanging at the gable end like crooked teeth. The decorative trims were more bare wood than white. On the garden side, the flower wallpaper in the milk maid’s room was peeling. Through the years, the colors of the flowers had slipped away from the greenish white base.

The shed had housed hay carts, race carts, and, later a car. No maid had lived in the little room for sixty years. The only thing properly standing was the timber skeleton inside. It was time for the shed to go.

First went the roof. Tile by tile, revealing the shingle underneath.

“Will you bring a bulldozer and one of those iron swing balls you see in cartoons?” I asked my father.

He would not – instead he carefully removed each vertical siding plank and placed them in a pile. “Your cousin is going to use these to heat up his farm buildings,” he said.

Finally, when only the timber skeleton was left, the bulldozer arrived. And when it was done, the hundred-year-old shed was gone, and Nature was back.

(Loviisa, Finland; August 2020)

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