Thomas Wolfe once observed that you can’t go home again. I suppose that’s true in the sense that you can never go back home because so much has changed about you and the place you come from that it will never be the same. But, on a deeper level, home is always a part of us; we never leave home and home never leaves us.
In my hometown of Hamilton, Ohio, I remember when we were all given forsythia bushes in school and told to go home and plant them in our yards. I was a little girl and can’t recall if this happened more than one year. I also can’t recall exactly where they came from. I think the owner of the local department store bought them and gave them to us because he wanted Hamilton to become known as the Forsythia City. It’s been a long while since I was home in the spring so I’m not sure how those forsythias are doing these days. In my mind, they still bloom there every spring.
In the fall of 2012, I moved into my new house, which is really an old house built about the time I was born. It wasn’t until that first spring that I realized there are about a dozen forsythia bushes in my yard. How perfect! I’m now in my second spring and they are blooming again. Every time I see them I think of my roots. They are a reminder to me of how the little girl who grew up in Hamilton, Ohio is always a part of me, not matter how long I’ve been away.
“We shall not cease from exploration, and the end of all our exploring will be to arrive where we started and know the place for the first time.” T. S. Eliot