“Where is home?” said the dove.

Home. What is home? Where is mine?

I sit on the deck and hear doves. This morning there is a new voice, that of a mourning dove, or a close relative. Its voice is flat and clear, lacking the guttural roll of the tropical birds and the deep somnolent hoot of the quail doves. The flat clear cooing reminds me of home. As this thought enters my mind I immediately feel a wistful sadness. Not from the dove’s mourning but from my own self, wondering not who but where? Who Whoo Whooo knows where home is.

The birds do not need to ask this question, wired as they are for place and time. The tug of day length, the abundance of forage, availability of water all combine to instruct, inform. The night stars and moon illuminate their paths, the vast magnetism of the sphere on which they alight connects with sensors in their spare skeletons. Somehow they know where to go, when to go.

The earth informs me too, calls me out each morning mysteriously. Without particular sound to alert me I awaken before sunrise, no matter where, no matter the time of year. I am drawn out of sleep, past the remembered dream state, into the coming daylight. I need to be there to witness this, without knowing why. This never stops me from wondering.

Where I live now there is little difference between in and out and I like it this way. My big doors sit open in the night, portals allowing night sounds to enter my home. As I fall asleep or awaken from it I hear the slight fall of rain against teyer palms, the rustle of geckos catching crunchy night flying moths and unwary katydids, the hum of insects, chorus of frog sounds. At certain times a luscious tropical perfume from some nearby night flowering plant drifts in.

I don’t know what combination of things alerts me to the coming light. It may be that I too am like the birds, possessing a place deep in my composition that process everything my senses detect and then something more. Perhaps I feel the cosmic sting of the sun’s first rays, too faint to detect with my eyes. Perhaps these rays enter my body mysteriously as radiant energy will. Perhaps each cell has its own sensor, not yet fathomed by scientists madly unraveling the clues. Whatever it is, my body has awareness. It knows.

This morning, after I walk myself awake on the deck, waiting for the coffee water to boil and soaking up the transitory notes of night sound subtly shifting to morning song, the question comes to me again. Where is my home? Who Whoo Whooo knows.

© 2010, Jennifer M. Pierce, All Rights Reserved

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