It has been 8,760 hours since I came home.
Since I left home.
It is two places now, where I am and where I was.Â It is pieces of memories that float to the surface with no warning and leave me gasping for breath.
It is silence in the Mother Temple when I close my eyes and pretend that I am in the Shrines, or standing on the sea wall, or walking down broken stone paths.Â I am still near the water, but instead of a warm sea I swim in the cold lake, instead of gardens I am stand in concrete city landscapes.
So much and so little has changed.Â There is a little more knowledge behind my eyes, a little more heaviness in my sighs, more smiles and more quiet.Â There is less need to be here and there and everywhere at once.
Work happens every day from 8 am-5 pm, Monday through Friday, just like I prayed for.Â Last night I signed a short lease for a place to rest my head at night, and a closet for my clothes.Â Resigned and happy.
I miss you and you and you and you and you and most especially you.
In between places and time are the photographs, the Saturday morning brunches, the days upon days at Bahji, the Friday afternoon soccer matches, Thursday nights that were never-ending, Monday’s game night and dinner, Tuesday farewells to the pilgrims, and praying my way down the mountain.
Home is a jumbled mess of prairie grass, the call to prayer, the flat roads, the mountain stairs, a million flowers, snow, sand, sky and no starlight.Â Haifa and Chicago.
My eyes have seen and
my heart has known and
my faith is this: I will never be alone.