Salisbury ‘cuz there’s a lot at steak…
“You can keep my things, they’ve come to take me home,” Solisbury Hill by Peter Gabriel
You never know how much cr*p you have until you have to move it. I have moved a LOT in my day, and it does not get any easier. But, every move has been for the better, even though I might not have realized it at the time.
Packing up all my stuff – stuffed toys, my now-defunct stereo from high school, boxes of old invoices and receipts, photo albums, and other detritus accumulated from years of not throwing stuff out – was not nearly as much fun as it sounds. There’s always the final sweep, one more box, one more cabinet to clean out, then there’s a squirrel and it’s hours later because I just *had* to pour over my middle school yearbook. One. More. Time.
Moving out of my parent’s house made me feel like a grown-up. Moving in with a now-ex partner was neat. Of course, my clumsy self broke so many dishes his mom bought us rainbow-colored plastic tumblers. And he didn’t like my rabbit. Peace out, Cub Scout! (That relationship did not last, ‘natch.) Living above the bar with the world’s best burgers hands down, off campus, with the 80-degree-bedroom roommate who couldn’t hold a job was quite an experience. Living “in the City” was something we all should experience at some point in our lives. Bagels and coffee a block away in one direction, the highway upstate (big, juicy wink for those who know me) in another. Too many other places to enumerate on…
Each experience allowed me to shed another layer, and to learn from my mistakes. This way, there is a strike in each category, and room to make new mistakes. Each move meant more boxes since there was…so. Much. Stuff. It’s hard to let go. (See literally every other post so far.)
Getting back to the matter at hand, though. The above-mentioned song really speaks to me. At first, the song says, “son, grab your things, I’ve come to take you home.” Maybe it means stop playing around, quit being silly, having struck out on your own, and come back to us. The subtext: you’re not ready to be in the real world. Still, it is rather infantilizing, *I* have come to take *you* home. The dad (I assume, but we all know what happens when you assume) is intimating he is there to collect a ne’er-do-well, immature kid after playtime. Grab your toys & back to your room.
Then again, maybe it’s a comfort thing. Grab your things, it’s time to come home where you’re loved and cared for. Someone will wash your clothes, and feed you.
Eventually, the story and lyrics progress to the quote: “you can keep my things.” For me, the implication is that the main character has shed the trappings of the material world, and can go home with a capital H. This is Brahman, “the highest Universal Principle, the Ultimate Reality in the universe…the pervasive, infinite, eternal truth and bliss which does not change, yet is the cause of all changes.” The ubiquitous Wikipedia.
We become reabsorbed into the Universe, to be at one with everything. We’ll be back, though, in some for or another.
When we finally shirk this mortal coil (thanks, Dad, for the colorful phrasing,) where do we go? Where’s home? Don’t look at me! I believe we come back in some form – energy, reincarnation, fill-in-the-blank. The so-called meat tube gets recycled and we are born anew. Sometimes while still here on Earth, in this lifetime, sometimes perhaps in the next.
If this resonated with you, please feel free to comment below or drop me an email. Until our mats unfurl again, be well.
PS I love puns. There, I said it. (That’s for the grammarians telling me about my malapropisms up top.)