Poetry On Odyssey: Home

Poetry on Odyssey: Home

Home is where you are loved.

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I'm from a small town in East-Central Illinois and I am very proud of my town, but at the same time I could see where we could do with some improvements. But, I love home enough to admit that I wish the town would allow for improvements instead of basking in the glory days and allowing everything to crumble around us.


Home with your cornfields glowing in the late evening glow

Home with your rolling rows of soybeans shifting in the wind

Home with your smells of barbecue in the summer

Home with your sounds of late-night parties, Selena blasting down the block


Home is driving by someone you may not know but waving anyway because it's just impolite not to

Home is getting pulled over and having a casual conversation about the officer's kids while they ticket you

Home with your autumnal smells of chili and cornbread waiting when I come in from raking the jewel-toned leaves

Home is a visit to the grocery store where you run into your old teachers and they have that look of pride on your face as you tell them how well you are doing


Home is not being ashamed to tell people where you are from (or that you high school mascot is a cob of corn)

Home is where you are loved for who you are and not what you could give

Home is where you are comfortable

Home is a small town in a nowhere county in the Midwest


I love Hoopeston and I hope that it loves me back. I know that with all the travels and endeavors that life may bring, home is where I will always want to come back to, even if purely to replicate the feeling of a warm, ratty security blanket, even if no one really wants me here.

Cover Image Credit:

Andrea Lile

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8 Reasons Why My Dad Is the Most Important Man In My Life

Forever my number one guy.
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Growing up, there's been one consistent man I can always count on, my father. In any aspect of my life, my dad has always been there, showing me unconditional love and respect every day. No matter what, I know that my dad will always be the most important man in my life for many reasons.

1. He has always been there.

Literally. From the day I was born until today, I have never not been able to count on my dad to be there for me, uplift me and be the best dad he can be.

2. He learned to adapt and suffer through girly trends to make me happy.

I'm sure when my dad was younger and pictured his future, he didn't think about the Barbie pretend pageants, dressing up as a princess, perfecting my pigtails and enduring other countless girly events. My dad never turned me down when I wanted to play a game, no matter what and was always willing to help me pick out cute outfits and do my hair before preschool.

3. He sends the cutest texts.

Random text messages since I have gotten my own cell phone have always come my way from my dad. Those randoms "I love you so much" and "I am so proud of you" never fail to make me smile, and I can always count on my dad for an adorable text message when I'm feeling down.

4. He taught me how to be brave.

When I needed to learn how to swim, he threw me in the pool. When I needed to learn how to ride a bike, he went alongside me and made sure I didn't fall too badly. When I needed to learn how to drive, he was there next to me, making sure I didn't crash.

5. He encourages me to best the best I can be.

My dad sees the best in me, no matter how much I fail. He's always there to support me and turn my failures into successes. He can sit on the phone with me for hours, talking future career stuff and listening to me lay out my future plans and goals. He wants the absolute best for me, and no is never an option, he is always willing to do whatever it takes to get me where I need to be.

6. He gets sentimental way too often, but it's cute.

Whether you're sitting down at the kitchen table, reminiscing about your childhood, or that one song comes on that your dad insists you will dance to together on your wedding day, your dad's emotions often come out in the cutest possible way, forever reminding you how loved you are.


7. He supports you, emotionally and financially.

Need to vent about a guy in your life that isn't treating you well? My dad is there. Need some extra cash to help fund spring break? He's there for that, too.

8. He shows me how I should be treated.

Yes, my dad treats me like a princess, and I don't expect every guy I meet to wait on me hand and foot, but I do expect respect, and that's exactly what my dad showed I deserve. From the way he loves, admires, and respects me, he shows me that there are guys out there who will one day come along and treat me like that. My dad always advises me to not put up with less than I deserve and assures me that the right guy will come along one day.

For these reasons and more, my dad will forever be my No. 1 man. I love you!

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Homesick

The yearning for a place and people beyond the reach of my fingertips.

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For those born and raised outside the borders of the United States, have you ever found yourself going about your daily life and thinking back to your home-county? With all of your favorite and most vivid memories rushing in without much warning, sending you on a rollercoaster of emotion. The ups, the downs, the everything in-between. The life you used to live is now playing itself back in front of your very eyes, and I can't help but feel homesick.

No matter how many years are now separating me from the time I lived in my home country, I will always feel saddened knowing I no longer live there. Yes, I have lived in the United States for more than half of my life, occasionally flying back home to visit family, and yet I always feel as if a small part of me remains on the other side of the world. That small part is what makes me yearn to fly back home-and stay there-, to be reunited with all of my family, and to be surrounded by the language of my people. I miss the way the food tastes; how tap water is better than any bottled water I've had in the states. How the mountains surrounding the city always make for a beautiful view no matter where I'm standing. I miss the guitar players and dancers who light up the city streets with culture and character. Most of all, I miss how much joy I find around me, and within me, when I am back home. There is something indescribable, almost magical, in the way my soul reacts when I step foot off that plane and back into my roots. It's as if the Earth itself grabs hold of me, and brings me close into a tight embrace. As if my home missed me just as much as I missed it. Whether I've been gone for eight years, or two, the unfamiliar quickly becomes familiar, and it feels like I never left. Like I can ask for a refund on my roundtrip flight because I have no desire to fly back to the states.

I feel homesick at the most random times. I could be out with my friends or buried deep in homework, but the memories of home will always find themselves back to me. I get sad for a little while, and it sucks that I cannot snap my fingers and find myself back home in an instant. Nevertheless, I reminisce on the good times and send a prayer up into the skies so I can go back home once more.

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