The Grapevine Art & Soul Salon

Miscellany: A Gallery for Related Materials


The following are taken from the Winter 2006 issue of Parabola:

In the moments when we are fully awake and fully engaged, we come home to ourselves and the world.

Tracy Cochran, "At Home in the World" (9).

When connections linking self, ancestors, society, and cosmos dissolve, homelessness ensues.

Kathrytn Allen Rabuzzi, "In My Father's House are Many Mansions" (12).

Almost universally, home, as opposed to mere dwelling, is vivified by a spirit of some sort, usually an ancestor....In pre-Christian Europe, the house god was commonly represented as a snake, which was believed to be a vehicle for the souls of the dead. (same essay, 13).

The Yoruba place a humanized image of the house god Olarosa at the door and make a recess in the wall for their personal fetish as well. Among the Udmurts, the ... clan god customarily resided on a shelf in the outhouse. Household altars also prominently characterize domestic observances in China, Japan, and Tibet. (same essay, 13).

Home as House

The ideal of happiness has always taken material form in the house, whether cottage or castle. It stands for permanence and separation from the world.

Simone de Beauvoir

Except for James Thurber...

Home as Place

Home is where you hang your childhood, and Mississippi to me is the beauty spot of creation, a dark, wide spacious land that you can breathe in.

Tennessee Williams

Home as Nation

This day is call'd the feast of Crispian.
He that outlives this day, and comes safe home,
Will stand a tip-toe when this day is nam'd,
And rouse him at the name of Crispian.
He that shall live this day, and see old age,
Will yearly on the vigil feast his neighbours,
And say 'To-morrow is Saint Crispian.'
Then will he strip his sleeve and show his scars,
And say 'These wounds I had on Crispian's day.'
Old men forget; yet all shall be forgot,
But he'll remember, with advantages,
What feats he did that day. Then shall our names,
Familiar in his mouth as household words-
Harry the King, Bedford and Exeter,
Warwick and Talbot, Salisbury and Gloucester-
Be in their flowing cups freshly rememb'red.
This story shall the good man teach his son;
And Crispin Crispian shall ne'er go by,
From this day to the ending of the world,
But we in it shall be remembered-
We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
Shall be my brother; be he ne'er so vile,
This day shall gentle his condition;
And gentlemen in England now-a-bed
Shall think themselves accurs'd they were not here,
And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
That fought with us upon Saint Crispin's day.

Shakespeare, Henry V

Home as Planet Earth

Home as Cave

A hermit nun outside her home: a cave only slightly larger than her body, cut into the walls of the tunnels and passages that lead to Bet Giorgis, the most beautiful of the rock hewn churches of Lalibela, Ethiopia.

Home as Person

Where Thou art -- that -- is Home --
Cashmere -- or Calvary -- the same --
Degree -- or Shame --
I scarce esteem Location's Name --
So I may Come --

What Thou dost -- is Delight --
Bondage as Play -- be sweet --
Imprisonment -- Content --
And Sentence -- Sacrament --
Just We two -- meet --

Where Thou art not -- is Woe --
Tho' Bands of Spices -- row --
What Thou dost not -- Despair --
Tho' Gabriel -- praise me -- Sire --

Emily Dickinson

Home as Heaven/God

Our birth is but a sleep and a forgetting:
The Soul that rises with us, our life's Star,
Hath had elsewhere its setting,
And cometh from afar:
Not in entire forgetfulness,
And not in utter nakedness,
But trailing clouds of glory do we come
From God, who is our home:
Heaven lies about us in our infancy!

William Wordsworth, "Ode on Intimations of Immortality"

Home as Home Plate

Baseball, a quintessential American game, is rich in literal experiences in which the players alternate between individual and group expression, and in metaphorical figures related to journeying (leaving home and homecoming). As can be seen from looking at the graphic outline of "home plate," there are resemblances to Navajo and Tibetan sand paintings in the mandala form it takes. The picture of Turner Field in Atlanta shows a communal ritual place, and when Joe Dimaggio crosses home plate (below, 1949), the myth of the hero comes alive.

Homeplate graphic:
Dimaggio crossing home plate l949:
Turner Field:
Thurber House:
Home as cave:
Satellite image of the earth:

Copyright 2007 Barbara Knott. All Rights Reserved
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