The beach sends me away with enmity, so I head inland.
But the jungle, it’s not mine. I defensively contend I’m a visitor when I feel like an intruder. The disruption of my invasion is not overlooked by those I meet.
The serenity, it’s nowhere outside of my own head. Even then, with the peace comes an underlying feeling of minutia and overstimulation to an underdeveloped section of my psyche. Here an occupant can co-exist with the surroundings, listen to the river without immersion, swim in it, drink it in. Any incidental disturbance is rebranded as nature.
The water lives, as much any plant or animal. It houses life without asking anything in return.
Without my heart, I am nothing. Without my brain, I am less.
The stream invites creatures to depend on it, for water, for food, for society.
Although this is a side effect I have created, it has been here before me, will remain long after my composition has disintegrated and my carbon pilfered. It enjoys the fortunate quality of not thinking, not having to think, and so when the inevitability takes its place and the river dries up, its contents will disperse and nothing will be lost to the entropic atmosphere.
The river is immortal, eternal, unwilling to recognize what it doesn’t have to. My mortality is only real because I recognize myself as a human, with solemnity.
All around me, I swat at the mosquitoes. This is part of the natural order. The ants crawl around my screen to be near the light, artificial as it is, knowing that they are exposed, and still they follow it. Nature has concocted traps disguised as trails.
We are staying in a treehouse, whose balcony I am watching from. I face a surrealistic scene, surreal only because of my upbringing, my destined experiences. Without civilization, airplanes, the internet, unwarranted privilege, I could never have found myself here. The trees are different from where I come from. A hundred years ago, nobody travelled this distance, and especially not with no money, no plans of acquiring any, no skills. Keep your commitments to a minimum and you have the freedom to go where you want. With financial acquisition and responsibility comes a mask of self-importance, of not wanting to disappoint, of wanting to get ahead, of dependence on those with more success.
The birds hit my ears with their saws and whistles, alien sounds, their chirps and squeals giving away their positions and their wants, a primitive communication that still works today. I picture a specific animal that doesn’t exist¹ standing in the river. He looks in my direction and laughs at how nobody will ever believe me when I say I saw him. We believe only what we can make sense of, what we understand. To get to a new point of understanding, a paradigm shift in thought, we have to ease ourselves into it. First someone must tell us the creature exists, then in our disbelief we look into it. The source tells us where it can be found.
Three distinct stages to a novel idea. I choose to skip them all to leave the door open for amazement, even if I don’t believe it myself.