Back Home: A Strange Sort of Exile


If the word is almost untranslatable, then what of one’s life as a peregrinatio? The cutting edge of this “never-ending transformation” draws blood once one realizes there is no returning to the way things were.

If a return to the life I previously had is impossible, then I am truly out to sea in a way I could never have anticipated upon leaving.

The Celts renounced their homeland in a quite literal way, vowing to never again lay eyes on its land or people. For me I have returned to my homeland only to find it a foreign country, altered forever by a my changed perception. The land I find is not the land I left. I wander through its streets visiting places I love—but I do not recognize them—like viewing all of life in a mirror’s reflection.

What a strange sort of exile it is to be separated from one’s homeland even while moving through it.

But of course it is not the place that has changed—it is I who am different. I am the one unrecognizable even to myself were it not for the crystal representation I see in the mirror—more myself, more at peace, more alive than I’d ever dared to dream.

pilgrimageRyan Moore