the sign said 5 miles. to canada. sitting in the backseat of the car, heart racing, my mind silently repeating, “are we there yet?”
immigraiton officer asks some questions. nods his head. “welcome home kid.”
another sign. 150 kilometres. to cobourg. impatiently my heart singing, “are we there YET?” the car (and time) can’t go any faster.
the highway turns into elgin street which turns into westwood cres. i am home again. mom and dad and the dogs waiting on the lawn. sister and family come running across the street. other sister and her curly-haired babe walk through the gate. the other one in the car with me. she brought me home. i am home. as my niece likes to say, “my whole family is here with me now.” whole i am indeed.
unpacking that night i pulled out an anthology of australian poetry that was given to me upon my departure. fittingly i opened the book at random to read this:
as i rode homeward, full of doubt,
i met a stranger riding out:
a foolish man he seemed to me;
but, ‘nay, i am yourself,’ said he,
‘just as you were when you rode out.’
so i rode homeward, free of doubt.
(the traveller by cj dennis, from ‘a book for kids’, 1921)
all roads lead homeward. even the yellow brick ones. the desintation, for this fool, never was in doubt.