I feel like a fraud sometimes, or an intruder, living here. It is and is not my home. My ancestry is from elsewhere (as it is for most Australians)—Poland, Ireland and England—and there is an indescribable longing for those places that I come from, yet do not know, ghosting in my cells. My bloodline came from the northern hemisphere, yet here I am, far south of the equator—a northern soul in a southern body.
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After writing this I came across a four-part series of pieces by Jay Griffiths on the subject of ‘home’, which you can find here; and the beautiful Welsh word hiraeth:
There is a Welsh word for homesickness – hiraeth – which is famously untranslatable into English. It is a past-haunted word which leans backwards in time and can hold the sense of an impossible longing for a home, a person, or a land that may never have existed, with a yearning sense of one’s incompleteness without it, it is wistful for the unattainable. (Part 2: A Beggarly Account of Empty Boxes)