Blog 1163 – 11.02.2018
One of the few poems I remember trying to memorize as a boy went something like this, “Breathes there the man with soul so dead who never to himself has said, ‘This is my own, my native land, whose heart has ne’er within him burned as home his footsteps he has turned from wandering on a foreign land. If such there be, go, mark him well, for him no minstrel raptures swell, but he shall go down to the vile dust from which his sprung, unwept, unhonored, and unsung.” I first heard the Sir Walter Scott Poem in the short story, “A Man Without A Country.” It is a cool poem, but not if it is meant to justify mindless patriotism of the sort someone more eloquent than I wrote:
“Patriotism is the last refuge of the scoundrel.” – Samuel Johnson, 1775
We do not have to believe that we nor our place of birth is “more, “better”, “holier”, “more noble”, and “prettier” to love her none the less.
As I conclude my three days of driving, in four states on the first day, four the second, and two today – a total of seven states all together, to get back to Houston, Texas, a place I have called home for the grater part of my life, I am lucky I know to be going home. And yes, I know that I have said and written, ad nauseum, that my home is in my heart, we can still feel a certain fondness for people and places more than we do for others. And I do about Texas, Houston in particular, and two people there especially dear to me – my wife, Linda Lee and my son, Jonathan David.
I carry them with me always in my heart and mind as I do many of you that I have met and spent time with. I write and sing daily to each of you hoping ever to expand my world, my circle of love to include more and more, indeed all, but then it is these two in particular that I am driving almost fifteen hundred miles to see. There is a draw that calls us back. Someone has said that three of the most beloved words in the English language are Heaven, Home, and Mother. And Home is right in the sticky middle and that is where we truly belong not to the right or the left. And, yes, Kevin Kosner, Iowa may indeed be heaven for some if it is home and where dreams come true. Many of mine came true in Houston. There I hope to make a few more come true before this journey is o’er.
Where work will take me next I am not sure. There is a chance, a good chance, that I might land a five year long assignment in West Texas. I think I might like to end my working career there. Then where will I call home. The North West, Northern California, Oregon? All nice or maybe a cabin by a pond in South Carolina. If global warming goes as many scientist predict it will, my wife’s home place could end up being beach front property. Maybe we could build a cabin there and pull the camper around the country throughout the years we have left after retirement. As A-Team’s George Peppard said in the picture I posted on this blog a couple of days ago, “I love it when a plan comes together.
I am a lucky man and that reminds me of some words in a Michael Buble song that I love to sing, “I’m lucky and I know.”
Your friend and fellow traveler,