What is more wonderful than water? Sitting quietly in puddles, falling gently from the skies. Undulating in the seas. Yet so fearsome when it seems livid with life, with intention. So purposeful in decrying existence of anything but itself. What is more wonderful than range?
I never knew how to swim. My parents sent me to learn when I was 12. I was thrown into the pool without a warning and observed, like an experiment. I clearly remember the fear I felt as I was consumed by the water. In my rapid movement and agitation, it did nothing. It stayed as it should, spectating. And even though I never learnt how to swim well, I fell in love with water. Floating like a jetsam of society, beneath me was the blue water and above me was the blue sky. Do they say one can never experience infinity?
I met a boy called Tommy. As simple and unassuming as the name may suggest. He urged me to leave the room and go to the islands. He got desperate about my unwillingness to be active. He pushed me to try experiencing the wild and I gave in, only to please him. So in my journey alone through unknown lands, I climbed a hill, found food in a street, travelled through a tram to reach the edge of the city. I spoke to strangers in broken words and waited for the boat to arrive. And I was truly surprised by how many people were there to travel with me. I was surprised that they all did it regularly and that they lived on the islands. You see, I was brought up in cities and made to believe the success of civilization lied in monument and storey. In tamed surroundings that engulfed air and defeated it. So for those hours when I was alone on an island, I watched the water kindly turning with the winds. I watched it change colours with the sky. I watched it ebbing on my feet, in a place one could never successfully locate, and despite the cold winter, I admired its beauty. If only could I ask, how does it exist without the need of notice?
I am writing this as I sit caged in four walls, while a storm rages outside. The wind and water is rushing into the extensions and cracks of our buildings and shattering all ideas of superiority. I can hear the noises of smashing glass and broken metal rods clanging. I am overcome with fear because there is electricity in the sky that I can not control. Yet I open the doors and listen to philharmonic in the dark. I stare at the amber of the sky, dystopic and afraid, but content nonetheless. Who even realizes the beauty of pain anymore?
We were taken away from the wilderness because of fear. When I ask myself what am I scared of, there is no answer. You can not answer what you can’t determine and there’s no place in this world for the undetermined. There’s no place in this world for wilderness.