Sunday, November 9, 2014

Finding my Way Home

This move from Buffalo to Atlanta has my father’s imprint on it.  Odd you might say, considering he’s been dead for decades, yet he’s been appearing in my dreams since before I left for Atlanta in August. Yang energy could be enough of an explanation for making this move.  What does it take to uproot oneself?  An upheaval of sorts, a burning dissatisfaction, or the perpetual longing for something more?  In my case, it wasn’t the upheaval but the sense I had to escape a kind of rust belt poverty and that time was running out for finding a good job. 

Back to the dreams which seemed to be foreshadowing this change. My father appeared in all the standard dreams of home, the childhood home where I lived for the first 17 years of my life and which still is the only place that bears the archetype of home.  In those dreams death is always a factor, usually my mother’s.  She is sick, we call an ambulance, or we weep at what has already occurred.  The house stands in one of its many forms, sometimes bigger or shabbier than I remember but always an important protagonist.  In one dream I came upon vomit in a room- the symbol of which I’m still trying to figure out. 

Then, in one dream, he flat out asked me why didn’t you have children?  My response was, aren’t my stories and poems enough?  Perhaps it’s a genetic question and in that case I have no answer or a million.  Years ago a Peruvian shaman I met told me I had a genetic make-up that was rarely seen and I carried more of my father than my mother.  One thing I know is I inherited his love of wanderlust.


Here’s a poem from my first chapbook:


Finding My Way Home


The Hmong bury placenta,

close to home.

Danger rises in direct proportion

to their distance from it.


The Navajo began

the long march home

where each tree,

each stream tells the past.


The spot that fixes me

to the ground, floats.


Lost in the birches

and pines of the Baltic,

following the storks south,

to nest in the bell towers

of Castillian churches,

I´m finding my way home.

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