Thursday, April 17, 2008
"...Not an anchor but a mast."
"Home" is a fairly loose term in our family and for good reason, I suppose. By my calculation, Jesse, our eldest, has lived in 11 different houses. That's just a little more than 1 house for every 2 years of his life.
It's not an outrageous number, really. I know people who have lived in many more in fewer years. So that score of 11 is just a figure that plots this family on some graph for global nomads.
"Your house shall be not an anchor but a mast."
I read this today in Kahill Gibran's little book, The Prophet, and it did something for me. We have not been able to provide for our children an anchor in a certain community. I suppose we weren't really looking to do that, after all, but whatever we were looking to do, we have not rooted them in a geographical location. There is not a spot on the map that reels them in and says, "This is where you are moored."
I'm not saying that they lack places to love that hold for them a collection of memories, speaking to them of who they are. The streams in Loita remember their bare and sun-browned bodies, I am sure. Those hills are imprinted with their growing foot prints. And then there is Portugal's Atlantic coast. The cliffs launched them off into the cold water far below and must retain the echo of their yells and laughter. They slept in the dunes and grew tall in the salty air there.
For all our wandering, I am hoping that our home is, somehow, a strong mast. May each of our 4 find it a true and trustworthy place from which to raise their sails.