If Home

“Back Door at the Hoover Cottage” by Patricia Rottino Cummins

This is the “signature” poem of my blog.  This is what I stand for and what I want to lay my life down for.  For me, home and the family are inseparable from the gospel of Jesus Christ.  Originally this poem had no biblical allusion, but as I neared the end of revisions, I felt compelled to make the link between home and faith more explicit.

The word gospel means “good news”.  In Christ, the family is a place where good news can be told, lived, and understood in a unique, unpredictable, and unreproducible manner.  The relationships of family are one of God’s greatest gifts.  When I go home at the end of the day I am going home to the good news of my family.  And they wait for me as if I am a fleet footed messenger carrying a good report across the mountain to where they are.

If home is where you go—if, here, you strike accords
between the sometimes angry parties at the table
and are able to heed the bell’s harmonic
when another round begins—you stand on solid ground.

If your pulp fictions hit the trash bin by the gate
before you stump over the back step
and through the door, if home is where
you log the daily lore, your feet are on the floor.

If home is where you laugh, cry, get surprised, listen,
touch, desire someone’s eyes, believe they believe
that you are wise, then you are wise.  
If this is your light and your sanctuary;

if home is where you go to rejoin the fight
after a long day—if your foundations shake
and your pillars quiver at the thought of this,
your beacon, quenched—you are a sage and a seer;

you are a lovely footed messenger in flight.

To see other wonderful paintings by Patricia Cummins click here.

5 Responses to “If Home”

  1. L E Stephey August 6, 2011 at 12:01 am #

    Beautifully expressed, John. And, knowing your family, I know it is all true, making the poem even more poignant. I can see a visual picture of your family when I read it, especially of the faces of you and Jill.

    • restorel66 August 6, 2011 at 6:14 pm #

      Thank you, thank you!

  2. LFFL January 18, 2014 at 11:32 pm #

    What a lovely poem!

    • restorel66 January 19, 2014 at 8:55 am #

      Thank you, and thanks for taking the time to say so.

      • LFFL January 19, 2014 at 9:07 am #


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