Everything changes... everything evolves... everybody doing every thing has their own process... new things have naturally arisen over time to replace other things and other ways of doing things; however, some things never change - and one of the things that will never change is the way that artists are inspired, the way that artists seek out new sources of stimulation, the way that artists wake up every morning and want to create art, the way that artists cannot settle down to sleep without first either thinking about or doing something about the nugget of an idea within them. There is something inherently human about art and about attempting to capture the sometimes incomparable, about the need to express our inner most thoughts, feelings, emotions, dreams, hopes, fears, and our natural insecurities... there is something primal about the experience of having this overriding instinct that we feel compelled to act upon... there is something almost genetic about how people young and old seem to have the same unconscious ability to be able to go to the same places that other people are unable to, because there exists this continuity of connection that crosses generations like some kind of universal melody. All my life I have created art, I have witnessed art being created, and I have come to recognize the look in a fellow artist's eyes when they are deep within that moment when the inspiration and the art within them are in full-flow, as if it were a sixth sense of mine that I have slowly but surely developed over time... all my life I have looked at the natural beauty of the world rise like waves upon an ocean and literally change the geography of a well known place or monument... all my life I have witnessed something come from something - and I have come to believe that "nothing" is in fact a type of "something" that we have not yet given a name to, because certain things are like energy and no matter what they will always exist. Looking for an answer to a question that may have been asked for centuries and expecting to find what has not occurred to anyone else before, at least to me, is not in any way a sign of madness - in fact, I believe the art of being inquisitive and never asking the question "why create art in the first place?" and just feeling this need to create some kind of art is the most powerful gift and the most fulfilling way of every artist.
One of the most beautiful and truly breathtaking sights that we mere mortals get to see is the last glimpse of daylight when the sun slowly disappears below the horizon at sunset, when day becomes night; and to me, for some reason, a sunset sometimes has even more of an impact upon me than witnessing a sunrise - because, for so many reasons, seeing the sun set reminds us all of how precious time is, how short life is, and how one day we will all see a last day when we will all close our eyes for the last time and day will forever become an eternal night. Sunsets happen too early for some people - however, everybody has at least once in their life enjoyed the experience of sitting, or standing, like a statue or a monument, as the last rays of the sole star at the centre of our solar system touches us and allows our shadow self to be caste upon the ground behind us... there is no more astounding moment like sitting upon the infinite grains of sand of a beach as the bright sunlight retreats to its source, as the temperature drops, as the air grows cold, and as the song of the sun is replaced by the crashing chorus of the waves of the sea, as the ocean tide recreates the shoreline, as above the clouds the stars of the cosmos sprinkle down a healthy dose of stardust to inspire the dreams of countless. Sunrises remind us all of new life... sunsets remind us all of how far we have all come and what we have done - and, in my experience, there is no more perfect time to sit and reflect upon life and our place in nature than on a summer's evening in June... sunrises remind us all of how amazing it is to be alive... sunsets remind us all that sometimes when something is over it is over though an echo of what was might in some form remain - however, I am sure that we can all agree that the journey of some things and the journey of some people are sometimes over way too soon.
How do you restart an engine? How do you reawaken the spark within? How do you remember who you are, who you were, and how you used to do what you used to do after so long of living in a state of limbo? How do you find your place once again somewhere, doing something, around people who you haven't seen for a long time? In my experience the only way forwards is perseverance, patience, repetition, and adaptation - until the moment arrives when you regain a sense of momentum that gives you some much needed drive. When we have time on our hands and we are able to do what we want, with who we want, most people tend to not want to dwell upon anything associated with work; however, there are those people who like to take their profession home with them and they even enjoy "talking shop" with anybody who will listen to them... when we find ourselves with too much time on our hands sometimes people can start to think about, and even dream about, being at work - even those people who claim that if they didn't have to work they wouldn't. Some people can't wait to retire from the moment that they start their first day earning an income... some people can't wait to go home from the moment that they "clock in" at their place of employment... some people wish that they could turn their passion project or their hobby into something that can sustain them both creatively as well as financially... some people get up every day and go to work ready to face anything that comes their way and they are willing to do whatever they have to do in order to be the best that they can be.
Everybody wants to live in hope when they are awake... everybody wants to dream of infinite possibilities when they asleep... everybody sees things that for some reason they instantly take to their heart and love... everybody - whether they remember or not - experiences internal moments of freedom during which they may have imagined that they had the gift to be able to fly, or perhaps talk to someone living or dead - someone who they may know, or someone who they may have always wanted to meet. Everybody is sometimes their own worst critic... everybody, most of the time, wants themselves to be a winner... everybody has something that they are meant to receive and to give... everyday everybody comes up with multiple ideas, but to be able self-actualize an idea and see it jump from someone's mind onto a page, and then perhaps become tangible and seemingly "more real", sometimes creators need to risk a part of themselves if they truly want to see their dreams delivered. Everybody will succeed, and everybody will fail... everybody will find themselves throughout their life in need of something or someone, and everybody will sometimes find themselves inextricably walking in circles and figuratively chasing their own tails... everybody has to eat... everybody has to drink... everybody has to breathe... everybody has to sleep... everybody sometimes has to be the chaser and everybody sometimes has to be the chased... everybody sometimes has to be the embracer and sometimes everybody needs to be the embraced.
It always feels good to reconnect... it always feels good to go back to somewhere you haven't been in a while... it is always good to see people who you have always felt a connection with... it always feels good to do something you haven't done for a while, but from the moment that you start doing something again, or from the moment that you see someone again, it feels like no time has passed - because almost immediately your muscle memory starts to kick in and deeply ingrained instincts begin to rise to the surface of your mind palpably fast. It always feels good to pick up and read a book that you haven't read since you were a child and instantly notice certain details about certain characters that you might have previously missed - and, because of the intervening time, it is as if the way that you once imagined people to appear in your minds eye has changed and evolved just as we all change throughout the many chapter of our life... it always feels good to hear a song that will always define an important moment in your life that ever time you hear it has the power to be able to transport you back in time to when and to where you felt affected by it for the first time. It always feels good to start a new adventure that you immediately know will be filled with experiences that will shape you, will mould you, and ultimately caste you in such a fundamental way that going forwards nothing will ever be the same... it always feels good to open your mind... it always feels good to let your thoughts and your ideas speak for themselves... it always feels good to find others like us so that we do not feel like we are alone... it always feels good to not have to worry and to feel free to let whatever is inside of us all out.
This is what I remember... this is how it used to be... this is what I and many others like me have been unable to do for almost a year... this is how I have spent so many mornings as a writer, as a poet, and as an observer of human nature: sitting in my favourite café, as the bells of a nearby clock ring out, and feel like I am where and when I need to be to take out my notebook and write some new poetry. It hasn't been the same experience, it hasn't been the same magic - even though I have not stopped writing, nor creating new things, over the last twelve months I, like everybody, has had to adapt to living in a world divided in so many ways... even though I have not been lacking in ideas, inspiration, drive, nor passion to let my poetic side express itself - now that I am back, sitting inside and enjoying the ambience and the atmosphere around me that I know so well, which for years has fuelled my creativity, I honestly feel as if I am able to spread the wings of my intrinsically poetic and artistic spirit. I have learned over the years to embrace every moment, because things can very easily be put on pause, beyond our control, or can even be brought to an abrupt end - which is why I often dwell upon memories of where I have been, of what I have seen and of what I have felt throughout my life... I am someone who has always looked to the distant horizon and to the future - but when anybody goes through a period of being within something, or away from someone who matters to them, everybody undoubtedly feels this need to somehow go back, to recapture and to relive all that to them for so long has always felt like a constant burning bulb of energizing inspiration, light, and hope.
For too long now so many people have been deprived of many vital things: work, travel, entertainment, and most importantly physical interactions with friends and family - but now we have all been given the permission to engage in "cautionary hugs"; if there could ever be such a thing? Never the less, it is now permissable for people to embrace their love ones in close quarters and show physical affection for someone openly for all the world to see... even though the virus plaguing the world continues to rage in variations across the planet, some of us are now able to meet up and talk with someone, inside somewhere, in ways that for so long have felt like distant memories or the stuff of dreams. It's has been so long now since people were able to kiss, hug, and be with people who they know so well, and it has been so long since people have been able to interact with someone of significance, face to face, that it will undoubtedly be hard for some people at first to revert back to how people used act without thinking with one another... some people might be more than a little reticent to eat inside a restaurant, or to sit in close proximity to someone who they do not personally know - because they may have lost the meaning and the importance at the heart of why people want and need to have close associations with other people for the benefit of their own mental health. I realize that everybody has their own individual process when attempting to adapt to rapid differences in circumstance - and we all know how hard it was when we were first told that we had to stay apart, that we had keep our distance, and that we had to protect ourselves from what we might be unwittingly exposed to; but there comes a time when enough is enough - and to me, as long as the world proceeds with caution down this long and winding road back to normality, and as long as people continue to volunteer to do their part and be vaccinated for the good of the many, then why not give people to right to have something and to give something meaningful to someone else as simple, and as a much needed and long overdue, as a hug.
Life is a livestream without a pause button... when something happens we can't commit every detail of every moment to memory... life sometimes feels like it is in a state of fast-forward... when someone scrolls through the posts of someone else who appears to be living the life that they have always wanted sometimes people can feel envy - however life is filled with more depth of perspective and colour than any resolution of screen could ever display perfectly... when a photograph is taken a thousand words could be used to describe what the two dimensions apparently show - but to go beyond a static image and dive into what preceeded it and what came after it you have to look to what appears in the background that may not be as easy to see, but take it from me it is there that you will see a picture's true poetry... there is no way yet to recall what the first face that we saw after we were born was, nor is there yet a way to know what the first sound that we heard was, nor who the first voice that we heard belonged to; but, make no mistake, our entire life of experiences are all saved within our brains - the good, the bad, the tragic, and the funny - and if at the end of everything each of us do indeed see our entire life flash before our eyes so fast that every moment merges together into a burst of bright light, be sure to try and do what people do every day when they see something on their phone that they think is worth capturing: remember what you can, while you can, and if necessary take a screenshot.
Nothing stays pristine forever... no one stays the same way for all the days of their life... over time things wear out like old leather... no one stays untarnished - over time the power of the sun damages the outer skin of something or someone after a prolonged period of exposure. Everything is impacted by outside influences... everybody is marked by their time on Earth... everything has a journey from its creation to its destruction made up of events that came as a result of their encounter with outside forces... everybody has their own individual path through life and at several points everybody experiences moments of significance on par with a moment of rebirth. Life isn't a race... life isn't meant to be rushed... life isn't only about the world around us - because so much of what connects us lies above us in outer space... for some people life is like a rock that needs to be constantly admired and occasionally polished; but, to me, what makes life so special is that every day, upon every thing and everyone, another layer of character is added to what makes something and someone what they are - and some things and some people are meant to be, and they are meant to remain unrestored, tarnished, and imprinted with life's indellible marks.