Tuesday, October 20, 2015

The Importance of Elsewhere - Philip Larkin

Sunrise - somewhere between Lourdes and Col de Portet d'Aspet / France (Wed 23 Sep 2009)

The Importance of Elsewhere by Philip Larkin:

Lonely in Ireland, since it was not home,
Strangeness made sense. The salt rebuff of speech,
Insisting so on difference, made me welcome:
Once that was recognised, we were in touch.

Their draughty streets, end-on to hills, the faint
Archaic smell of dockland, like a stable,
The herring-hawker's cry, dwindling, went
To prove me separate, not unworkable.

Living in England has no such excuse:
These are my customs and establishments
It would be much more serious to refuse.
Here no elsewhere underwrites my existence.

Referenced in The Importance of Here by Kathryn Heyman - Good Weekend (Sun 15 Jul 2006) posted here on Thu 10 Sep 2015.

Not exactly sure I feel the same release from who I am when away from home. If anything I regress more into myself to the point that I make sure I am oblvious to anyone. Admire people who have the confidence to be themselves wherever they are. It's a great quality to have and it certainly would make life a bit more comfortable.

I am who I am and there is not much point trying to be something, or hoping to be something, I am not. It's too hard and I worked that one out a long time ago, though I do try every now and then to push myself a little.

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