A Little Bit Like Home

Christine Hurst is an API Peer Mentor who studied abroad in Rome, Italy.

The Italy that my mother knows
from the travel channels
is the vaulted ceilings of cathedrals,
fields of Tuscan sunflowers,
and lots of recipes for bread and pasta.

But to me the word “Rome”
sounds just a little bit like home –
it encompasses the September sun
and November’s rainy cobblestones
sidewalks strewn with soggy leaves
migrating birds in all the trees,
a morning cappuchino on the sidewalk,
an afternoon espresso at the bar.
Waiting at the bus stop
and waiting
and waiting
ed aspetando;
priests and nuns throughout the streets
and the air always sweet
with the sounds of bells.
The Tiber in the winter rushes her banks
and in the summer languid and low,
all the little moments a life can know
all the experiences alone we feel
we come together to make them real
and in this commonplace wonder are not alone.
And isn’t it remarkable that we
all spinning madly through our orbits
each circling a separate sun
all aiming for our different stars –
have chosen to cast our lots into this moment
in this time and place
out of all of space
could have ended up here, together.

In but a few days we’ll be off again
each of us a lonely planet
hurtling into next semester
next year
the rest of our lives.
And isn’t it remarkable that we
have created, even temporarily
a place if only for our memories
in this foreign city, a little bit like home.

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  1. That was beautiful! Thank you so much for sharing. I’m sure that poem resonates with many students who have been abroad.

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