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" …our heart understands that it just needs to keep playing along."

If home is where my heart is, I've been homeless for the last decade because my heart has been living far away from where it "is." Long story, often repeated, best left unsaid, we left our home for a lengthy exile which felt like an ancient form of punishment for having successfully made our dream come true. We lived in a house of our choosing, one endlessly challenging us with needed paint and repairs and a yard and garden always trending toward chaos had we not been there. We loved our lives there but found them unsustainable, so we went in search of some sort of grail, I guess, believing with all of our hearts that one day we might regain the ability to again inhabit where our heart lives. We figure that a few more years might do it, but we really, truly do not know for sure.

The tenuous space between anything and a heart's desire contains mostly Homelessness, however otherwise well-appointed it might seem.
We have not been living rough on the street, thank The Gods, but in relative comfort, although in somebody else's neighborhoods surrounded by other people's history. Passion cares little for other people's history. It votes without conviction. It empathizes without really understanding why. It keeps up the yard as ritual rather than sacrament. Appearances probably mislead. The quality of caring never rises to the level of conviction, maintenance as a matter of form rather than real content, producing a hollowing rather than a purely hollow existence. Little matters there.

The infrequent visits back into the Home Where The Heart Is reliably produce nostalgia, but a backwards sort. An ache for a future yet to become replaces the bittersweet recollections of a once-was place. The past seems more clearly gone with each passing year. The future seems more emphatically not yet manifested each trip back. The nothing-yet-lessness defines the sense of Homelessness which has become our seemingly permanent address for now. We say "for now" without really knowing whether the vague contingencies might somehow work themselves out. The cloying unknowing wears on our faith.

We make promises to ourselves that we well know we might prove unable to keep. This practice seems both unwise and necessary, for those hearts might one day shatter with the realization that our long withheld home ultimately proved permanently out of reach. Zombie hearts result, ones beating in the absence of their desire rather than in the presence or the confident pursuit of it. I sense that the possible future neighborhood long ago forgot all about us, as if we were passing strangers rather than true inhabitants of that particular homeland and no other. Will it accept our re-tenancy like it once embraced our original habitation, or will we have spoiled the trance in re-pursuing the place we long ago left our hearts when we moved our bodies away?

The rest of the world seems to be moving along and over that time and place that we hope still holds a future place for us someday. We clearly inhabit a different world, perhaps even a different universe, a someday space almost devoid of any semblance of present. Presence merely carries forward toward a future resting spot and hardly ever lingers in any here and now. Memories hardly stick. Purpose rarely comes into focus. We feed our beast without even trying to rest in peace anymore; heartsick, I suspect. We peer through cage bars so long present that we hardly see them anymore. We so well respect the boundary they maintain that we never try to sneak across that frontier anymore. It's as if we know our place cannot possibly be where our heart is and our heart understands that it just needs to keep playing along.

©2019 by David A. Schmaltz - all rights reserved

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