Thursday, October 28, 2010

The great expanse

Here comes a post by one morose motherfucker. Feel free to eject now if you'd rather avoid that sort of thing.
Sometimes, things change slowly. One bit of the riverbank is washed away, one snowflake shifts out of position. Slowly, over weeks, months, and years, things change. Sometimes, they never stop changing, and you only notice years later that the course of the river is different. But sometimes, the small changes add up, and the whole thing comes crashing down, altering everything in its path. The river overflows its banks, the snow comes down in an avalanche, and nothing can stop the rushing tide of change.

Sometimes, this happens in life. The rushing change may or may not be in our direct control, but sometimes they happen. I suppose the inevitability of change happening, of life happening, means that we have to be prepared when it happens.

After the flood, the landscape is different. Places that you used to know, paths you walked daily and thoughtlessly, are forever different, and some are unrecognizable. Things that you thought would always be there vanish in an instant, never to come back. The only certainty left is that you're not certain of anything any more.

I'm standing in the middle of a receding flood now. The reality of everything is still sinking in, even though the waters are still flowing. I'm not sure where to go or what to do when they're gone. There's a whole new expanse to explore. I'm human. I should want to go and explore, meet and experience. I don't though. Not yet. I want to find those old paths I used to walk, those places I loved, and stay there. I know that they're gone, washed away by the rushing waters, but my feet and my heart still look for them, because they can't do otherwise.

In time, I may convince them to stop, to finally accept, and go in search of new paths and new places. But, they tell me, we might find what we're looking for. So I'll let them look. Because part of me wants to believe that they may be right. So while I know that someday I'll stop looking, that day isn't here now. For now, I stand in this ruined place, waiting for the waters to recede, part of me clinging to a futile hope, knowing and embracing that even if I find those paths, it will take untold effort to clear and walk them again. The rest of me knows that the place I knew is gone, and that I can't stay here.

But all of me knows that during those weeks, months, and years that the river was carrying its bank away bit by bit, I sat. And watched it. And did nothing to stop it.

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