Feng shui is an ancient Chinese practice of arranging the various parts of a house so that the house reaches an equilibrium, a point where the house and its furnishings are in balance with the natural environment outside and the family’s truest values. Feng shui helps a family live harmoniously and reflects to visitors what the occupants stand for.
For our second son and his wife, Justin and Kerry, I composed the following verse for their Oct. 1, 2003, wedding. Afterward, Justin gave me a copy of it, matted and framed, and I positioned it just inside our front entrance for all guests to see.
I named the composition “Bless This House,” with a subtitle “Hospitality Rules.” If you take “rules” as a verb, it voices the commitment of the in-dwellers to relate hospitably to all who enter. If you read “rules” as a noun, it means the standards that the in-dwellers aspire to practice.
May the path to your door be inviting and clear.
May your porch steps be few and good handrails be near.
May your stoop have a roof that blocks out rain and snow.
May your portals admit both the high and the low.
May your threshold traversed bring feelings of cheer.
May your vestibule introduce lives mingled here.
May your hearth say, “Welcome — be cozy and warm.”
May your lintels — like lovers — endure every storm.
May your bath be as hot or as cold as you mean.
May your closets be organized, ample and clean.
May your kitchen yield fragrance and flavors galore.
May your bedroom bring ecstasy, friendship and more.
May your guest room be ready and frequented much.
May your yard attract butterflies, finches and such.
May your pleasures be many, your potholes be few.
May you never once doubt just how much we love you!