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Brandeis University's Community Newspaper — Waltham, Mass.

Exploring outward and inner nature

A series of creative pieces on the world around us

Published: November 5, 2010
Section: Arts, Etc.


It was just one of those kinds of days. The beauty around her astonished her into some kind of slumber as she tried to capture every inch of beauty before its overwhelming aesthetics made her comatose. She got on her knees, bent this way and that—all different angles to attempt to capture the big, encompassing picture. The sunflowers were surprisingly still covered in morning dew as the sun nearly scorched her eyes behind their tall stalks and bright yellow petals. The nearest flower could be juxtaposed in the circle of the sun so that the rays came off the flower, no doubt an image that gave it its name. All she could do was hope that the palette of colors she wanted to capture with her camera instead of a paintbrush would not lose its hold in translation from sky and earth to pixels and paper. What really mattered was catching the sunflowers in all of their glory, for they always fascinated her with their sheer size; it was as if they grew out of the earth to be some form of creature desiring to be human. Roses and irises were pretty, but they were also only flowers and only a foot or less tall; nothing else really could compare to those yellow giants in the sky. As she stood next to the sunflowers, she felt as if she were the artist and they the models. To be eternally free in a field of sunflowers under the continual summer sun is all she ever really wanted.


The seemingly ceaseless motion of the subway pulled me into a direction of contemplation as my eyes focused on the frames that the windows created in the movie of passing scenes illuminated by the bright, white clouds. The wooden houses, the trees, the streets, the tunnels, the bridges, the buildings, the water; the smile upon my face as the sun’s rays make me revel in the temporary warmth; the realization behind closed eyes that this is where I want to spend the rest of my life. This is the same journey, the same trip I would repeatedly take just to be at peace. The same path, the same coexistence of perpetual movement and steady observation, that I could never stop desiring. I feel at home in all of these sensations, these images, these recollections. And yet I feel I can truly only make a home out of this place if I could witness my life while being in the life of another, to share these things and places which I hold most dear, so I can finally become whole.


The soft pinks caress the clouds as they envelope the sky, slowly floating over the trees as if only stopping by to say hello. Swaths of light blue sky peep out from holes in the white cotton as a hushed murmur of a wind plays with the leaves of the pine trees. All is quieting down as the sun begins to fade and bright garish lights replace the natural rays of life. The chill seeps in from the darkening environment as nature is extended into the man-made cocoons that we call homes. There is never any getting away, only an attempt to embrace the barrier between the cold outside and the safety inside by being together with loved ones under blankets emanating heat, laughter and love.


The colors of the leaves and the weaning sunshine point towards the coming of a new season of fervent freshness and dizzying spectrum, of the simultaneous marching ahead and leaving behind. Approaching the future: its vagueness and excitement and its concrete happiness. Each week marks the increasing distance between present existence and all that symbolizes what is most familiar; each second is negating the past and forging a path, one that leads to both the unknown and the known, of continual longings and subsequent filled desires, of being warm and stagnant, and then cold and active. The oppositional binaries of life are continuous: you miss and are missed, you sleep, then you wake, you yearn for, then you receive. But what if nothing positive occurs, what if you are stuck in one malignant season of the self? What if green life never turns to colorful death to be renewed and progress? What if the sunset is all you see as a mark of consistency, but never attain any change to your immediate reality? Stuck in one place, one time, one repeated schedule—you can never break free. You are all you will ever be.