Written By Pauline Wee - Ever Reading, Ever Learning, Ever Writing
I'm no philosopher, but I've had enough sun-streaked afternoons amongst tangled earphones and humming fans to slip into the world of thought. To think about it, our race is simple - we are born, we grow, we live, we die. We are bubbles, blown up by evolution until our complex systems fall apart. We bump and we touch, we shine and shimmer, but in the end, we are but a circular stain of slippery on a cold tile floor.
That was until I met her.
At first, I never really noticed, merely shrugged at her every mention. My gaze passed through her like it had for the rest of her family - I never felt the need to pay her a second glance. Our only contact remained in the seldom brush of too-wide shoulders and the whisper of quotes pinned to her name. She hung from the fringes of my mind, fingers away from never resurfacing.
It would have stayed that way, I believe, in the distant murmur of ignorance, if not for the sheer power of mortal curiosity. I sought meaning, I sought magic, I sought answers. She had all the answers, people said. Their prompts were more than enough for my ever-wide eyes and gaping mouth to seek her secrets, to fall headfirst into her open heart. Finally, she gained depth, color, shadow; she began to matter.
At first, I begged to touch, to admire her lithe form, skim my fingertips over her spine and the backs of her knees. She curved soft in my hands when I fumbled with the tips of her hair, never complained when I looked elsewhere or touched another. She had caged my interest far too snugly in candlestick fingers, burning bright on my fringes and hemming them tight. She I ignored, pushed aside, bent apart, but her hold on my memory never loosened. She built a home out of my thoughts, ever perusing the aisles of words and numbers to pick out her share of shape and color.
Then, once I finally swore my fidelity, she began to teach.
She took my hand and guided the bounce and edge of ink; I learned every inch of her skin like a second language. She ripped the film of reason from my eyes and bore me to the sun, let me cry into the brightness, awaken. I learned to sew stars into oceans and line leaves with ripped denim, to stamp life into the cracks of the earth and wrangle dreams onto paper. At last, I saw past the bubbles and the blur of text, the anatomy and the tangle of matter. I felt the space stretched out like animal hide, smelled the break of before and now, tasted the hiss of fire and sizzle of ice, heard the tenor of winds and bass of movement. For the first time since I was born, I lived.
She, my shallow, patient, ever-insistent love, is poetry.
Now, I know. We are bubbles. We are born, we live, we work, and we die. But in between hang worlds of possibility, of belief and creation and love, in all its states and forms. As you lie in tangled earphones, singing along to the hum of the fan, stretch your fingers past your self-imposed shell. Reach out, and live.