My stepfather, John O'Hara, was the goodest man there was. He was not a man of many words, but of carefully chosen ones. He was the one parent who didn't try to fix me. One night I sat on his lap in his chair by the woodstove, sobbing. He just held me quietly and then asked only, What does it feel like? It was the first time I was prompted to articulate it. I thought about it, then said, I feel homesick. That still feels like the most accurate description - I felt homesick, but I was home.
It tugs at me, filling me with the kind of seasick nostalgia that can hit you in the gut when you find an old concert ticket in your purse or an old coin machine ring you got down at the boardwalk on a day when you went searching for mermaids in the surf with your best friend.That punch of nostalgia hits me now and I start to sink down on the sky-coloured quilt, feeling the nubby fabric under my fingers, familiar as the topography of my hand.
In my own shire, if I was sadHomely comforters I had:The earth, because my heart was sore,Sorrowed for the son she bore;And standing hills, long to remain,Shared their short-lived comrade's pain.And bound for the same bourn as I,On every road I wandered by,Trod beside me, close and dear,The beautiful and death-struck year:Whether in the woodland brownI heard the beechnut rustle down,And saw the purple crocus paleFlower about the autumn dale;Or littering far the fields of MayLady-smocks a-bleaching lay,And like a skylit water stoodThe bluebells in the azured wood. Yonder, lightening other loads,The season range the country roads,But here in London streets I kenNo such helpmates, only men;And these are not in plight to bear,If they would, another's care.They have enough as 'tis: I seeIn many an eye that measures meThe mortal sickness of a mindToo unhappy to be kind.Undone with misery, all they canIs to hate their fellow man;And till they drop they needs must stillLook at you and wish you ill.
...that was the one distinct time in my life, the strangest moment of all, when I didn’t know who I was—I was far away from home, haunted and tired with travel, in a cheap hotel room I’d never seen, hearing the hiss of steam outside, and the creak of the old wood of the hotel, and footsteps upstairs, and all the sad sounds, and I looked at the cracked high ceiling and really didn’t know who I was for about fifteen strange seconds. I wasn’t scared; I was just somebody else, some stranger, and my whole life was a haunted life, the life of a ghost. I was halfway across America, at the dividing line between the East of my youth and the West of my future, and maybe that’s why it happened right there and then, that strange red afternoon.
I'm always homesick for the journey,” I had once written in ink speckled script, adding almost as an afterthought, “...no matter what it may hold.
Heart thoughts are profound, hindsight aches and hope is obscure. I'm craving a great adventure -- one that leads me back home.
Cricket’s voice broke through Thomas’s memory. He was reading a letter, most likely from his mother. He was trying hard to hide it, but he was tearing up. “Captain I don’t want to be here,” was all he could choke out. Thomas reached over and gave Cricket’s shoulder a tight squeeze.
With me and India it's all about leaving and returning. Madras is home. It's a very complicated relationship. When you are away too long you get homesick, and when you are there too long you are sick of home.
It dawned on me that no person is as poetically homesick as someone who has come to New York for the first time and glimpsed a small vestige of her home state.
But it wasn't the right season to lift off. Not yet. I sat in my apartment and looked out over the city, and I just didn't feel any passion to write about the place. I didn't give a damn about local politics; I wasn't moved by the issues. I missed home. And I was frustrated by people who actually thought the world was a centre and that centre was here. ‘The world's a sphere, everyone,’ I wanted to say. ‘The centre of a sphere doesn't lie on its surface. Look up the word 'superficial', when you have a chance.