THE UNFINISHED POT
by Donna Shepherd
The potter cleared his work area, washed his hands and proceeded to prepare to go home. After a long days work, it was time to go home to his family. One would think the shop would sit in silence till he returned the next day. But as the door closed and locked behind him, a faint whimpering filled the air. Coming from the far table sat the makings of a medium size pitcher.
" I can't keep going through this. The constant pounding, I felt I wouldn't make it through and now I find out I will be put in a fire. I've had all I can take. Please, let me be."
Others sighed as if to agree, while another without any emotion at all replied, "Oh, get over it, we all go through it-you'll be no different."
"I won't, I can't take anymore. I just want to be okay, I want it all to stop."
Out of the shadows came a much older voice. Much older than any voice heard from all of the pottery.
"Do you realize what you're saying?"
Not a real deep pot but a good size, his height not any more than most pots, at first glance you'd of thought he was ordinary. If you caught a glance at one side of him you would see the makings of a fine pot. Very intricate markings had been started, with such fine detail you knew he must have been special ordered. But you could see plainly it just stopped abruptly, leaving him with an unfinished look.
With sad, gray eyes he asked again, "Are you aware what stopping the process means?"
"To me," the whimpering pot answered,"it means no more pain, no more ugly pain, a resting, so to say."
"But my dear friend, it means so much more."
A quietness fell across the storage room. For this pot seemed to have a heaviness in his voice yet a caring concern and they waited for him to expound.
"As you are, so once was I," he began. Ordered for a family that wanted a priceless heirloom to pass down through each generation, the potter felt an excitement he'd never felt before, being assigned to such a meaningful creation. He drew up many ideas. Going only for the best, the finest detail, of which he would be proud to sign his name to at the completion.
At first, I felt the excitement, too. As he chose me for the finer clay. I knew he
was going to make me special. I was very eager, until, well, he started
Sittting here, I've seen lumps of clay transformed into useful pots and vases. They all have meaning in life, but me.I stopped it all. It was as if I jumped to the floor and shattered to pieces. Life as it was meant to be for me, ended.
It hurt to much. I felt it took so much out of me so one day as the potter sat putting the finer details on me, I folded. After days and days of complaining I had gotten his attention. He left the decision up to me and I called it off.
I had become so unworkable that he couldn't take me any further.
Listen to an old pot, don't complain and quit. Remember the potter is working to make you strong, durable and useful. A vessel to be proud of. What seems like harshness if just intricate designing. If you stop now you stop the whole process only to be out of the race. Just to sit on this shelf left to wonder how things would have been if you had lived the life of the vessel that endured the hard times.
You know, all the vessels have went through the same pain. But I hear their owners come in and give such good reports of how well made they are and how useful. The vase that was made for the hospital having accommodated so many bouquets and cheered so many as they were sick. The cup that was made for a special father, he used it every morning and when he died, is now priceless to his son. What joy would have been lost had they folded under the pressure.
So stand still and be strong. Try to remember the potter is only doing what is necessary to take you further to be useful. Trust him; as he knows his business.