m-day approaching fast


we are moving.
didn’t plan to.
didn’t really want to
– at least not just yet –
but we are.


and i am struck
once again
with the undeniable fact
and weightiness
of accumulation.
of the
physical variety,
i mean.

as we fill more and more
and more and more
and still more and more and more
empty liquor boxes,
i long to streamline
to carry only what i can fit in my car
or better still
in a single backpack
and okay, possibly a suitcase.
(albeit an extra large suitcase).

i remember the days
when i covered empty cardboard boxes
with contact paper
to create nightstands.
i remember the delight
of making do
with what we had on hand.
and honestly,
i kinda’ want to go back to those days.
that kind of resourcefulness
builds confidence
and character
and creativity of the first order.

most of my boxes are filled with
family history and herstory.
and such
from a grove of family trees.
i will resume operation scan ’em up and roll ’em out
hopefully in the foreseeable future,
even though my daughter worries just a tad
about ever-advancing technology
eventually rendering them

ah, my daughter.

my son moved away years ago,
so i’m kinda’ used to
the way loving him
comes with a side of pain,
but it’s shocking how much
i already miss my daughter.
we are close, you see,
and otherwise.
but hey,
the good news is:
she’s able to take possession
of some special items
without me having to die
for her to get them.

interesting that i’ve been thinking about death
a lot
and here we are moving.
now i know that i can create a home
wherever i go,
there’s a kind of grief that
occasionally breaks through the barriers
i’ve hobbled together.

this whole scenario
came about just last week,
and though my son
worries that we are living
more impulsively
than waldenly,
when the couple appeared
and asked,
we said yes
and immediately began packing
a four-week turnaround
flies by quicker than you
can touch your ear.


  1. Elizabeth Marie

    Oh. Wow. What a dramatic transition! I … this is so odd, in a way. I am going to an open mic tonight (mostly just friends who happen to write). I’m bringing a poem I wrote about a move I made a few years ago. I love this post, this poem. I remember when I used to be able to fit everything I owned (when I was in school) into the trunk and back seat of my Buick Opel. Except for my books. I used to have to mail my books.

    Good luck. Don’t wear out. Boxes from the grocery store produce section are sturdy, too.

    Mostly, I love this writing. I love the flow, the rhythm. It feels like I’m glimpsing my own future (or bits of it). thinking of you.

    • wholly jeanne

      Thanks, Sug. Have fun at your open mic tonight, and hey, if you’re a mind to share those poems with one who lives too far away to attend . . .

  2. Heather

    Moving… I know that task all too well. I see we use the same moving boxes. I’m sending you some packing and purging energy.

    Confession: Instead of empathy, my first thought was “NO! You can’t move away.” Sorry about that.

    • wholly jeanne

      I can use all the packing and purging energy I can get! And hey, don’t be sorry about your first thought – makes me smile. xo

  3. Mrsmediocrity

    wow, you do move quickly! i hope it is for positive reasons, and yes, it is the perfect time to purge, we do accumulate don’t we? miss you!

    • wholly jeanne

      Speed seems to be the name of the game! Am missing you terribly. Looking forward to getting all these damned boxes schlepped to NC then treating myself to your gorgeous, soothing words. Love you big.

  4. Karen Sharp

    oh, Jeanne, sweet Jeanne, stepping barefoot through your own humanness with such tender loving awareness.

    May your move go well, may all the logistics go as smoothly as possible, may the new roads you travel on rise gently to meet your feet. May blessing follow up behind you, gathering up shards of loss like Autumn gathers up flowers and fire-lit leaves beloved to her breast.

    As your old life dies around you, and grief breaks through your barriers now and again, I would wish for you to always know that the ground of love that you stand upon, can never be moved away from.

    • whollyjeanne

      Karen. My dear, beloved Karen. Thank you.

  5. Brenda

    OMG I know that day will come for us and we are both saver and keepers of history–some people might say “pack rats”–you’re not leaving the hometown are you?


    • whollyjeanne

      Oh Brenda, I’ll save my boxes for you;) Yes, leaving F’ville heading to settle into our home in NC. But we’ll be back. Often.

  6. jo miller

    Holy Cow! good for you love the spontaneity having the faith to take a leap. You write so well and I feel that i am right there with you,cheering,weeping,aching…
    I lightened up my load a lot a few years ago & yes my kids were shaking their heads & I loved giving things away,like you say before dying 🙂
    It is very liberating and empowering like you said being and feeling rsourceful.We don’t want to get stale. 🙂
    & I chuckle as I remember many moves which really only consisted of moving the stereo components
    You are a gem. I love you @whollyjeanne. It’s a pretty neat ol’ world. Best of luck with the move. Have fun!

  7. Meredith

    Nearly two months later, I’m still handling unpacking and purging. I’ve become less “home-sick” and more accepting of my new “home.”

    I have to wonder how far your travels will take you. I believe we are currently residing in the same state — granted, I some times feel like this corner of NW GA is practically TN.

  8. Alana

    Oh. My. Sometimes life moves faster than a speeding bullet. I’ve been wondering where you were…now I’m wondering where you’ll be. I do know, for a fact, that wherever that is, it will be surrounded by love and laughter. And those cats.

  9. Tracy Brown

    I echo Alana’s comment.. I had been wondering about you, Jeanne… I see there’s a newer post you’ve made since this one, and I’m heading up there to learn more. I hope that whatever the reason for the move, in the end, you are going to find yourself enjoying – no, loving – this new leg of your journey. <3

  10. Jen

    Your words, as always, are a sinful pleasure to read.

    However, today, I must tell you:

    I LOVE, beyond measure, that the boxes used for your move were all previously inhabited by liquor. A sizeable chortle escaped.

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