“I looked through the window at the palm tree standing in the courtyard of our house and I knew that all was still well in life. I looked at its strong straight trunk, at its roots that strike down into the ground, at the green branches hanging down loosely over its top, and I experienced a feeling of assurance. I felt not like a storm-swept feather but like that palm tree, a being with a background, with roots, with a purpose."- A Book.
I had a rush of a feeling, as I read and reread -and reread- that excerpt, a feeling resembling a nostalgia for something I've never experienced. Like a homesickness for a 'home' that's never existed... It's strange, being human.
I've always been a little envious of those who seemed inextricably connected to something bigger than themselves, of those who related to a background or have taken it upon themselves to embody a culture; a series of customs, things that 'must' be performed, ways in which those things are performed, people to whom it all made sense. I've always been a little envious of those who have a predefined, concrete meaning of 'home'.
Well, envious of and annoyed with.
Why do we feel obligated to act in accordance to a set of predesigned morals? Is it the convenience of fitting into pret-a-porter molds instead of undergoing the existential anguish of being your own person?
What if I identify as that storm-swept feather?
It is fascinating, how the notion of roots fluctuates sometimes between feelings of suffocation, paralysis, and repression and those of warmth and acceptance. But really how accepting is conditional acceptance?
Perhaps it's the image of a 'security blanket' I'm occasionally a little envious of; the feeling it generates; that you are an inseparable molecule, woven into something that predates you and will continue to exist long after you have ceased... perhaps in a way that is the closest we get to immortality. Perhaps it's the closest we get to not being alone.
But in a time where everything and everyone seem to be swallowed by a system or another, and we seem to no longer ponder the meaning of things, I'd rather stay a storm-swept feather. Free, light, wandering. However forgettable I may be, I am still ultimately an inextricably intricate part of an inextricably intricate ecological system that does not bother with who I am or how I look or the concepts I choose or those I reject; and when my bones decay and I am one with earth, my atoms will mix with those of trees or scatter as dust, and everywhere will be 'home'.