Welcome Home!

by Mark Renz

Think about it...
No matter how far you travel
you never really leave home
Far away are familiar faces you don't really know
who look like someone you do
Related perhaps in some other country, state, county or century
bound together by a single strand of DNA
with a couple of wild sequences thrown in for good measure
While driving, you see the same railroad tracks,
same cars and paint jobs,
same drivers in the same hurry
You encounter the same fast-food diners, rusted tin roofs,
high voltage wires, tall grass growing under an old boat and trailer,
highway signs warning or promoting
buried cable, flea market, antiques for sale, trading post,
cheap storage, financing arranged, We're No. 1,
School zone ahead, slow down, speed limit 15, hurry, don't miss our sale
On ramp, off ramp, first and last primitive church
Modern steeple
Bent mailbox
Return to a familiar house,
the one you've entered a million times
but will never really be yours
And out back beyond the fence,
green pine missiles aimed at true north
Grass everywhere, healthy, evenly cut but at what cost
Walking mirrors that look like you, Sons and daughters, aunts and uncles
Same clothes, same smiles, frowns, grins, laughter, sighs
Same overheard stories your Pa told you, or maybe it was your teacher
or preacher or a voice somewhere in your head
Back on the road
Spinning your tires
going nowhere
Highway wildflowers to greet the weary traveler
who never really left
Welcome home!