"What is a home? "
She whispered in my ear.
And those eyes, so eager and innocent, held mine.
We were chasing butterflies,
Our laughter echoed across the twilight air.
And all of a sudden she sobered up,
From this unanticipated hit of curiosity.
She was so tiny, my responsibility,
I was her proud brother,
Not by blood,
But by the bonds that we had forged together.
Here in this orphanage, with hundreds of others just like us,
As we dreamt of a place called home,
And a family to claim as our own.
I smiled at her,
" Somewhere you are happy,
A place where someone always thinks of you,
A place you will always belong to,
That's what a home is"
She nodded once and then hugged me tight,
As if with me is where she belonged.
I shook my head at her childishness,
And promised her quietly,
"You'll find it soon."
Alas, fate had something else in store.
All of a sudden, one day,
I was introduced to them both.
Two kind faces and empty hands,
Held out, beckoning me.
Before I could even comprehend it all,
The woman embraced me ,
Encompassed me with a warmth that was unknown to me before,
A mother's love.
And shielding us both were two strong hands,
That could only belong to a father.
As an afterthought, I realized,
Time always escapes the fastest
In moments that we cling onto the hardest.
There were thoughts I had to convey to her,
Feelings to express, memories to cherish.
But will her little mind be able to grasp any of that?
So all I could do was silently nod
As she whispered, "Shall we meet again?"
I moved on, with a family
That eventually became my own,
Never really learning to let go;
Caught in a dilemma.
A part of me wanted to own every possibility that the future promised me,
Another half just lost in a random memory,
Of a young girl chasing butterflies.
Maybe, this was the home I had always dreamt of.
And still not the one I could call mine.
I thought I would find it in my own sweet time,
First, I had all these moments to create,
Let the colorful canvas of my mind ignite the gray reality.
Show the world I had enough sunshine to paint my own rainbow
Make everyone acknowledge my existence.
I could feel it in my veins as I conquered every zenith,
Yes, I was alive.
But not home.
Even in those million eyes,
Around the world,
Every country that I stopped by,
And all the friends I made
Who blended into my soul, piece by piece.
There was still that one missing,
The one that made it home.
My mind kept wandering,
Entangled in a lone memory,
In search of a little girl chasing butterflies,
And my heart echoed with a question,
"What is home?"
Until I found her one day,
The eyes that had haunted me for so long,
Aged with time and yet the same
Innocent, lit up with an unspoken familiarity
When they caught mine
And strangely, here, in a distant land
Faraway from where I've always lived,
Yet somehow I just knew,
With her, this is home.