Where have I been you all ask? Out and about and gathering pictures for this very thing! My friend and I happened to be taking pictures along the water.
I had been seeing this girl for awhile and now we were on a make or break moment of our relationship: the first road trip. We had just arrived, but before we even got to the hotel she demanded we pull over.
“Baby, we’ve been driving all night. Let’s stop to see the ocean!” she said with that thick accent I love so much. It reminded me of my childhood.I really want to keep driving and just check in, but I know I can’t resist her.
We pull over into a parking lot, there are no free places to park. I look at the parking meter and decide that since we won’t be too long, so it shouldn’t be a big deal. She was already out of the car and walking toward the sand dunes. Pausing in the shade of a palm tree, she looks back at me and her expression portrays happy and questioning. I scramble to catch up to her, I know that I didn’t want to miss a minute. We had had some tense conversations in the car on our way up, so I was pleasantly surprised when I felt her fingers slip into the vacant spot in my palm. I hold her hand tight. I want her to feel how sorry I was for my shortcomings with her parents and how I knew that I spent too much time out with my friends. I need her to know that all I want in life is her.
We walk in silence through the sand dunes, hand in hand, until we reached the end of it. The pristine turquoise water had only small waves that lapped tenderly at the white sandy shore. The sound of bugs chirping was quieted by the shushing of the waves. She let out a sigh that she had been holding the whole car ride. She let the beauty wash her clean of worry. We both start removing our shoes as she whispers, “This is perfect baby, thank you.”
The sand is warm between my exposed toes, I excuse myself to check out the water. I glance back and take in how stunning she looks. The sun glistens off of the deep rich tones in her skin, the little she has showing. Neither of us are dressed for the beach; but never the less, I am amazed how she captivates my attention. Her tee shirt and jeans hug her ample curves and she catches my eye. I quickly turn to face the sea. I know that look in her eye and the meaning, she knows she is beautiful and she accepts that I am drawn to her. I dip my toes in the water and let the slight temperature difference focus my thoughts.
“Oh the joy of my spirit — it is uncaged –it darts like lightning!
It is not enough to have this globe or a certain time,
I will have thousands globes and all times.”
I have been unleashed from the bonds of my silent captors, my mind. I relinquished the crown to a substance more fickle than what might seem fit; but once it was done, it shall not revert to its previous state. Inside me the roaring of a lion was masked by bars of iron and its beauty was tainted. It slouched lifelessly in the back of its cage, murmuring soft complaints in place of the ferocity it would have contained. Now the bars are gone at least briefly and the lion shakes out its mane. My soul, my soul has been freed. It is weary from fighting the repression; but now it flies, no darts with the spine tingling sensation of electricity. It flows with unprecedented speed from cloud to cloud seeing all that it can before striking down with such intensity to either mar the surrounding area or awe inspiring with its power. The entire world and its numerous experiences lay ripe at my feet. I can either collect the bountiful harvest and be fulfilled or I can let them rot on the vine and be as hollow and empty as the field shall be come winter. I must no longer tarry. Life is not going to wait for me.
Walking among the masses of people, I see how many are drinking from the fountain of life and I see a new perspective. Our lives are infinitesimally small and it would be impossible to gather all that this life has to offer. We not only need to live our lives, but live through others as well. Allow them to help gather the fruits of that field and obtain their knowledge secondhand. We are engineered to be at least slightly communal. We require one another to ascend into the most we can be. We have learned to pass knowledge and thoughts and to help lift one another into a more holistic being. We should not allow ourselves to be limited to a certain set of information, looking for all viewpoints on all issues will help see the world more clearly. Everyone has something they can teach another.
I have embraced this lifestyle, but was scared. I was intimidated by the lion’s roar and I have learned that it is my own. I wanted acceptance, but feared rejection. The deep gravel in my pitch marked a soul much older than its body and I didn’t know if it could fit into this society. I now have seen the beauty and strength it has given me. I can go anywhere and belong, be anyone and still be true to myself, and I know that it is not to be muffled. Caging my soul leads only to disaster, because I can always feel its call resonating through every cell in my body. I cannot allow life to pass me by. I want to drink in every glorious second and see all the simple things that others pass by. I will never close my eyes so I don’t miss a second.
“O the joy of that vast elemental sympathy which only the human soul is
Capable of generating and emitting in steady and limitless floods”
Excerpts from “A Song of Joys” by Walt Whitman