Have you ever wondered what life was like in an unoccupied space? What happens in a space left bare, with no one to witness what happens there? Do you realise, I asked myself, that everyday, all around this gigantic world, right now, there are millions of places like this, where wonderful, unknown things are happening, that no one will ever have knowledge of?
Today, I came back home early. I passed by the stone church with the rose roof, and the small, blink-and-you’ll-miss-it park facing it. I passed by much before the first cars leaving work started filling the streets with smoke and haste and an air of impatience. Much before people started rushing. Much before Time mattered. There are no rules, you know at 10:30 a.m. on a Friday? All the rules are elsewhere. In office buildings and schools ; in pages of binding, binded contracts. But outside of that, Life just flows. Undisturbed, hushed, covered as though a scene from within a snowglobe (and I a symbolic human figure). And there it was, that liminal space. There was that opening, that silver of time during which the small park detached itself from earth, from reality a little. At the same time I stood in awe, an old man cycled past, half dozing on his rusty bicycle. It was so quiet you could hear the sound of his tires pressing against the asphalt, and crackling a little on stray bits of gravel.
In the park, a kaleidoscope* of small, pale yellow butterflies was fluttering by a low flower bush. The wind blew gently, a little foreign, carrying some unknown scent. I thought to myself that if I hadn’t caught that moment, it would have slipped forever into ignorance and nothing would have come of it.
There is beauty in being alone in places and moments like these. There is power, yes, in witnessing all these things that would otherwise never have made it into the human consciousness. But at its core is humility, reverence. People often say that ‘this and this place gives a whole other view at night’, but places are whole other places too without people. Places are whole other worlds when you are alone. When you get to witness, all on your own, the way a tree loses its petal-like leaves, fluttering gently in colored heaps by its roots. It is like a lullaby for the eyes. For something deeper, even. It satiates you for that moment, completely. Fills all your needs and wants to the brim with contentment. With gratitude, with “Thank you for letting me witness this moment.”.
It stirs something in you, carries you away for a little while.
And for much longer every time you think of it.
It is a memory, yes, but also an endless journey.
Listening to :
* YES, a group of butterflies can actually be called a kaleidoscope. How beautiful is this. Unreal, I tell you.
Also, this :
I get so swept up writing about the time I got swept up that words like ‘flutterblies’ happen…That being said, ‘butterfly’ is actually an anagram of ‘flutter by’ soooo…