Awareness dawns for the little seed as it sits in its cocoon. It doesn’t know it’s a seed. It just knows it has life, and it stretches as far as its pod allows. I want to grow, it says and feels and thinks. I want to grow. And so it stretches, and pulls and pushes, and wriggles but nothing happens. Wait, says the cocoon, the skein that wraps tightly around the seed. Wait, and see.
The seed ignores the skein. It wriggles. It pushes. It is life, and it is full of life. Life can’t wait for a skein’s wisdom.
I was carried down to Singapore when I was two years old. I don’t remember a thing, of course. But imagine a mom of four, bringing all four kids in tow, of which one can barely toddle around, to a foreign land, settling all their school stuff, all their needs, preparing to cook for them, preparing to teach and educate them, in a world where information was hard to get. New school standards. Uniforms. Rules and regulations. Thankfully Singapore culture and Malaysian culture isn’t all that different.
Opening my eyes again,
Looking at the world,
Trying hard to make sense of it,
Hanging by a thread.
The skyship creaked gently as it made its way across the evening sky. Above the clouds, it was as if it was floating in the midst of a white ocean, with only a gentle breeze to accompany its passage. Wooden propellors spun lazily, while a large sail did most of the work pushing the ship along, as the sun blazed in the west, doing its best to heat up the world before it would be hidden for another night. A couple of cloth covered wings creaked as they flapped gently and rhythmically on either side of the ship, keeping it aloft.
He bent over to tie his shoelaces, before straightening up, looking again into the little arched and tree-lined entryway into the forest.
He’d just moved to Canada from his hometown in Europe. He’d gotten a new job and would start in a couple of days. As it was, he’d already gone in to meet his new colleagues, and everything was exciting and good.
It jarred him that there was just this little imperfection.
So here I hang, dangling by a thin rope over a sea of lava, while a horde of screaming monkeys chatters on the edge of the cliff from which I dangle, with a few of them trying to apply the heat of a flickering candle to the rope that holds me bound. Sitting at one end of the cliff, is Edgar the Barbarian, who continues to turn the skull he holds in his hand, seemingly still trying to make sense of life, the universe and everything in it, as he was hours before, staring emptily at the skull. I’m trying to make known to him my personal views about life and how short it can be as you’re cooking over lava, but I’m severely hampered by the ropes that tie my hands, and the gag in my mouth.
Wait. Let me back up.
The little boy walks into the room and plomps down on to the beanbag next to his dad, who’s working on his laptop. He beats the beanbag and huffs a couple of times, and when that doesn’t work, he sprawls open like a sea star, and stares at his dad, willing him to give him a glance.
It seems to work. Dad, with a sigh, snaps his laptop lid shut and looks at the boy. “Yes?” Just a hint of resignation, and a hint of forbearance. The boy ignores all that though. It’s his prerogative to command the full attention of a parent after all.
Have you ever seen a sakura tree blossom? If you haven’t, it’s a beautiful view, scented subtly by the delicate perfume given off by the sakura flower. This is most famous in Japan, of course, and is a reason for tourists to swarm to Japan just for that season, to catch a glimpse of the trees cloaked in swatches of pink.
But have you heard of the sakura fairy?
Have you heard a sunbeam speak before? I have.
A sunbeam comes from the sun (duh) but that’s all we think it is. It actually is much more than that.
This sunbeam found me one day, when I was walking along the road, looking up into the sky, feeling the warmth of the sun against my skin. I’ve been struggling emotionally for a while now, so the feel of the sun was actually nice. So I tilted my head to expose more of my face to the welcoming heat. I must have turned my head a little as well, for one little sunbeam flitted into my ear, and dived right in.
He was young when he finally tasted freedom. And it was bad. Really bad.
He’d been at an amusement park when it happened. An amusement park is a wonderful place, and when you’re a young boy with lots of energy, it’s a place of mystery and wonder. All those dark alleys and tents that your parents pull you past, instead of letting you in to soak in all the different joys that mystery has to offer. He wanted to taste them, and he knew, just knew, that it would be wonderful and fun. Parents are there for a reason – to take away fun. Therefore, by extension, anything that his parents denied him must be fun.
He never told them that though, for fear of being punished. Parents, you know.
So when the roving amusement park came to town again, and they were queuing for a ride, he waited for them to be distracted with his sister’s incessant questions, and then he ran. He ran.