Quote of the day...er...week...umm...hey, look, a quote!!

"...besides love, independence of thought is the greatest gift an adult can give a child." - Bryce Courtenay, The Power of One

For old quotes, look here.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Between Sea and Sky

When I was a girl, I loved going out onto the ocean, alone, to a place where I could drift between sea and sky without fear of interruption - no other boats, no people, no sound to disturb the song of water and wind.

I would drift, float, sometimes slip into the water, lay on my back, and just...be.

When I moved away from the shore, I missed it, and a place deep within my psyche still yearns for that place between places.

Land-locked, I would climb trees to find solace, making my way deep into the woods where cool shadows curled around each other, played tricks with the light, held secrets and mysteries, kept little stores of snow hidden away from the spring melt. Up high, nestled in the topmost limbs, I would feel the tree sway in the wind, let myself sway with it, listen to the hushing of air through the branches, smell the pine-and-loam of the forest below. With a book, bottle of water and an apple, I could stay up there for hours and just...be.

When I moved from New Hampshire to Georgia, I was bereft - no sea, no magnificent old conifers to climb, and surrounded by people who I didn't know and who thought me worth teasing and bullying because I was different from their norm.

Without the solace of the tides or the creaking embrace of the trees, I found Night.

Outside the house I shared with my Mum and Big Brother, I found relief from the heat, from prying eyes and wagging tongues, from television and telephone and The World. There were the stars above, and I fancied they were laughing, singing, dancing just beyond my reach. The moon would caress me with her light, wrap me in pale silver-blue coolth. I would lie in the grass, staring up and out, and just...be.

Throughout my life, for as long as I can remember, I have preferred solitude to company. A lonely old soul, am I. As a child, I did fine among people - I could laugh, play, socialize, and be content, but I spent more time alone, reading, coloring, or wandering the lanes of made up lands for hours on end.

The older I get, the more I value solitude, and the less I have of it. I wonder if the reason I am so often out of sorts is because I am so infrequently left to myself.

Sometimes my mind wanders down unfamiliar paths, and I catch myself wondering what like would be like if I were alone. Would I have a little house? A condo? An apartment? Would I have some sort of shop (a bakery, perhaps, or a fortune teller's den) and live above it? Would I write more? Would I feel myself struggling to breathe, as I sometimes do now, because my life is wrapped around me too tight? Or would I be content? What if I had Bird, but no T? What if...?

Don't get me wrong - I love Mum, and Bird, and even T (poor devil), and I love my friends, too...only, it would be nice if I could have days when I was alone with my thoughts and my madness and could just...be.


Writer Dad said...

I never cared about the quiet until I couldn't have it anymore. Now I need it like protein.

Susan said...

You are speaking my language. My birthday gift every year is a day, (preferably a weekend), in my house all alone. I do or don't do whatever I want and I love every solitary minute.

chris said...

I love solitude also, but sometimes I cannot bare to be alone because of all the crazy things that swirls in my head

Kyddryn said...

Writer Dad, I am lucky enough to have valued it when I could get it - and I STILL miss it!

Susan, that sounds lovely. I've had exactly half a day alone in my house since Bird was born, and that was entirely by accident. Sigh.

Chris, that's exactly why I need time alone - to let my thoughts whirl and get weird and dark and jumbled and sorted out.

Kit said...

I miss it like a past addiction, my soul aches for it, part of me dries up without it, but I am good at ignoring things that are out of my control.

As I stumble out of the land of babies, and breathe the somewhat freer air of young children, I will be able to arrange for a sweet fix of solitude once in awhile. For now, a rare hour or two once in awhile will have to do.

The Broken Man said...

I love the sea it has a special place in my heart, my father was buried at sea he had the oceans in his eyes and loved the more than life itself, but having been rescued from 20ft up a tree by the fire brigade I stopped my climbing

i love your writting its beautful and when i read it i feel like the world stops for a few mins. thank you