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Writing

Presence

It is difficult to be exactly where you are. My mind slips easier than my breath leaves my lungs. I do not know what it is to be free of thought. To not recall past interactions and wince as I think of what I could have done differently when it was my present. It is a vicious cycle, desiring to change the past while the present I do not want happens around me.

It was easy to live in my own time when I was doing something I was proud of. When I was living the life I said I always would. When I wasn’t surprised when my parents would say they were proud of me. There’s nothing very glamorous about consistent habits and working. For these are things that I should be doing, anyway. There is nothing romantic about doing what you’re supposed to.

Categories
Writing

Habits

There is no switch. There is no on and off. There is no automatic pivot in direction. I can’t just change a habit.

Fiction often speaks of that revelatory moment, that sudden shift in perspective. The moment where things just change. For me, it is more like a few steps forward and a couple back, with sidesteps sprinkled here and there until I hardly even know where I am going anymore. For me, it comes in seasons. At one time, it smells of flowers and the sun after weeks of darkness; at another, I am watching the dead leaves fall around me once again.

Years learning how to behave around someone does not just change because they do. Years spent learning to love something does not just leave when they do. It is hard to continuously remind yourself not to feel a certain way, not to do a particular thing. I suppose the only motivation is the fact that it works both ways:

It is painful to change when people treat you as if you haven’t.

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Writing

Texture

The word texture derives from the latin word for structure or network. It has roots in the verb ‘to weave’ or the noun ‘web’. Thus, it is not simply the feel of an object beneath your fingertips, weaving itself through the sensory receptors comprising your hands. Texture is not simply the finished product as the word at face value would have you believe, it is all the components of its being. It is the design, the material, and the way in which it was constructed.

In saying so, I hope you bear with me as I ponder the varying textures that constitute our world. I find it easier to contemplate the world than it is to examine myself. For example, the pine cones scattered across the splintered ground contain a three dimensional world comprised of nearly two dimensional plains, more similar to flowers than pine needles, their own kin. Mushrooms, on the other hand, feel and taste of the soil, their womb. They are smooth as dirt trapped in your fingernails and infused with the gentle darkness of the earth.

I wonder about the texture of light, as well. It is too infinitesimal to be tangible to our fragile humanness, but pervasive nonetheless. And what of the texture of people, of our networks and webs? What of the way we are woven into each other time and time again?

Categories
Writing

Beauty

I recently read that beauty is terror. I think it is more like awe, but I suppose they are nearly the same. A thing can either be awesome or awful, but either way it is saturated in awe. Either way, it is a human experience.

Beauty is a feeling, but it cannot be limited to our basic five senses. It is what happens after the sense: the rose after you smell it, the words after you read them, the painting after you see it. Beauty is the reaction to the external, what your own senses elicit within you.

There is no beauty without a sense of awe, perhaps terror. There is no beauty without your own rapid heart to make it so.