Dispossessed

You must miss it, your homeland,

familiar landmarks, rise and fall

of voices and their music,

the usual and the known.

You must return there, often,

or long to do so, musing

on how poorly we compare with all

the characters you knew there.

You must feel out of place here

for though we are attentive

and smile while you are speaking,

we do not understand.

We’ve heard about your country

its beauty and its charm.

We envy the accomplishments

for which your land is known.

 

How can I miss my homeland

when so much there has changed

and I like any tourist

who does not know the way?

How can I speak its music

when I no longer practise

adopting blander melodies

much easier to translate?

How can I miss its people

who shelter here with me

packing in their luggage

only what was best?

Your country just as beautiful,

your people just as fine,

your music just as charming

but never shall be mine.

First published in Reach

 

 

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