by on November 17, 2023 :: 1 comment

I would press a million miles into my shoes
each inch and each mile pounded there a footstep at a time
I would shun ten thousand places of rest
I would dump them all in my one good chair
every stop promised me and refused waiting there for me to sink in
and sleep through them one by one–
my feet still in my shoes those hardened and patched by the miles
compressed in them
and I will go forth as soon as I conceive all this–
I will take my hat to hold this scheme tight to my head
I will only take my coat to give weight
to my endless shrug to all I must neglect, forget, forswear—
–at all of that I must yet return to–
I will have the means and vigor to correct all of that,
every cost of absence that I will find:
for that is the point of going forth at all
everything that is not my chosen sanctuary
can offer me nothing but distances piled up,
turnings that are but distance disguised as stop
cul-de-sacs masquerading as return
the amnesia of arrest to stop me–
all of it made another layer where my socks meet my shoes
all of it met, defied,
called empty
its magnitude inverted as the enclosure of my abode
its emptiness compressed and hollowed,
turned out as a sock is turned out
hollowed as the particular opening that alone
can be called or can be made a residence
all of this the resolve and promise of rest
the resolve to meet the reordering
that my return
will make me pay to enter again:
to meet all there is outside,
all of it,
until it is traversed
to return and say none of that was ever here
that alone can make my house my home.

– Benjamin Pierce

editors note:

Home is where the heart is, a head below and to the left. – mh clay

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