Eventually, All Roads Lead Back Home – Country Roads RFD – Jacki Kellum Watercolor

Many years ago, I read that eventually everyone moves back to the general vicinity of where they grew up. I scoffed. I sneered. I raised my eyebrow and grinned a mean grin. You see, I was busy living my life. I had left “home” many years before and had hardly looked in my rear view mirror, and since I had left my hometown in the Bootheel of Southeast Missouri, I had basked in the gentility of the Deep South of Mississippi, and with hands in white gloves, I had fanned my faint brow and had blocked the glaring sun. And then, I had soared to the Northeast–not far away from New York City and Washington D.C. and Philadelphia. I spent hours upon hours pacing through throngs of art museums in the north, and I caught the frequent special exhibits that have a way of landing in either New York City or the Capitol City. While in the Northeast, I lived a few houses from the ocean. My yard was sandy. Seagulls swooped all around and dipped down to pick pizza crusts from the palms of my hands.  I allowed the salty air of the Atlantic Ocean to envelop me, and I danced by the light of the moon. “Go back home? Never! I was too busy living my life.”

But, gradually, the paradigm shifted, and I began feeling a tug that I was not expecting–a tug to go back home. A few days before I left the northeast, my friends gave me a party, and I told them my life story:

“…his mother called him “WILD THING!”
and Max said “I’LL EAT YOU UP!”
so he was sent to bed without eating anything.
That very night in Max’s room a forest grew
and grew and
grew until his ceiling hung with vines
and the walls became the world all around
and an ocean tumbled by with a private boat for Max
and he sailed off through night and day
and in and out of weeks
and almost over a year
to where the wild things are.
And when he came to the place where the wild things are
they roared their terrible roars and gnashed their terrible teeth
and rolled their terrible eyes and showed their terrible claws
till Max said “BE STILL!”
and tamed with the magic trick
of staring into all their yellow eyes without blinking once
and they were frightened and called him the most wild thing of all
“And now,” cried Max, “let the wild rumpus start!”
“Now stop!” Max said and sent the wild things off to bed without their supper.
And Max the king of all wild things was lonely and wanted to be where
someone loved him best of all.
Then all around from far away across the world
he smelled good things to eat
so he gave up being king of where the wild things are.
. . .

and sailed back over a year
and in and out of weeks
and through a day
and into the night of his very own room
where he found his supper waiting for him
and it was still hot.” – Maurice Sendak – Where the Wild Things Are

For a few months, I have been back home in the South, and the new, truly me is beginning to peek from beneath the clouds that I have cast upon my own path, and yes, all roads do eventually go back home.

Country Mailbox Rural Free Delivery – Jacki Kellum Watercolor


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