i, epigram
write wide, write deep

the shelf: t's writings

“Because this business of becoming conscious, of being a writer, is ultimately about asking yourself, How alive am I willing to be?"

Anne Lamott

home, 2018

days have turned to weeks to months to years

I said I’d be back

and now I have

to a place I once called home

in a way, it’s still home

a place that houses memories, great and dear

laughter and tears I wouldn’t trade

for all the riches of the world

but what greets me isn’t the warm hearth

I have kept alive in my memories

in the recesses where I’d disappear fondly to

when reality challenges

I see it as it is now

dilapidated ruins of a time gone by

ivy and moss slithered as if

taking possession of what once were

dust settled like rightful owners

on the cold hard stones of the remnants of a


that was what I was looking for

for three long decades

always driven by a desire to be

truly at home

truly able to breathe

truly able to settle

I have thought that dream impossible



and weird, abnormal even

a part of me even gave up

ever achieving the dream of

coming home

being home

having a home.

I mean—I have a home

to an extent I have two

or three, maybe even four

but at the same time

I have none

as this vicenarian turns into

a tricenarian, musings of

home comes back to haunt

and rather than

bring me down with how things

worked out or didn’t work out

I come to a realization of sorts

an epiphany of sorts

a deep settlement in my heart

that home has always been

more than geography

more than latitudes, longitudes

language or culture

home is and always will be

broken, messy people taking time from their

broken, messy lives

to love me.

home is

a mother who loves unconditionally

unrelentingly, annoyingly demonstrative

in her unfathomable love

it’s a community with pastors who

became spiritual parents who

accept and celebrate


with all my struggles and quirks and difficult


who saw me and loved me

no matter how much I’ve let them down

home is

a friend that “sticks closer than a brother”

(the writer of that proverb really knows what’s what)

that family isn’t always blood

and the best of friends came from

a simple choice to sit next to a stranger

it’s a friend who fiercely protects,

who loves greatly even whilst struggling with the word,

is undeterred by oceans and time zones,

and reminds me of my worth

even when I’ve forgotten

home is

a friend who understands

my journey and my call

and pushes me to love Jesus more

and take sabbaths

and to not be stupid

but patiently waits until the truth sinks in,

(all this over a cup of tea)

it’s a friend who’d wait until the coffee permeates

before greeting me

knowing that an uncaffeinated late-riser

is a sleeping bear so handle with care

home is

a friend who have seen me

through the decades

through the seasons

who saw me before I was ever who I am now

it’s a friend who, through the years,

celebrates my call, covers my weaknesses,

speaks truth, cheers for me, laughs at stupid things I do, sits through

tears at cafes,

and hugs me.

home is

a friend who geeks out with me

and knows exactly what fantasy world reference

I’m referring to

books and movies and tv shows

suggested, dissected

recommended, criticized

it’s a friend who

shares not only other stories by other authors

but our stories as well

weaving prose and poetry and even haikus


home is

a friendship that has developed into sisterhood

where events are planned and problem solved

where silliness reign and speaks in “whale” 

where values shared and we both care

to put people before plans or programs 

it’s painting together on a mental health Sunday

and enjoying cloud eggs and Law and Order

and coffee and pretty much everything good

and to the one who stood by me as

I had to come through this realization

happy twenty-first, I can’t believe time flew


home is

a bunch of teens

eager, passionate, creative, a little off kilter at times

but genuine, resilient, courageous

i get to do life with them

for such a time as this

so for this time God seems to call

I wouldn’t trade them

not for anything

not for anyone

while all these pockets and moments and people

echoes the sounds of home

I’m still restless, not satisfied with echoes

but I’ve come to know

and firmly believe

that this restlessness is a good thing

no, it’s an excellent thing

because it tells you who I am

and who it is I belong to

I’m not from around here, you see

I have always belonged to another place

I was born here and I’ve lived here

for ten thousand days

yet all that can’t make me

less of who I am

I forgot, dear friends

of where I am from

and it’s a struggle when you’ve never

even seen what home is like

it’s easy to forget if not for that

feeling deep inside

that holy restlessness I can’t seem to quench

but this holy restlessness is good

because it tells the truth

like a homing beacon

it whispers,

“home is yet to come”



Tirza Magdiel, April 2018 

on homeTirza Magdielhome